The eighth and, sadly, the last of the late British author's works featuring Ben Jurnet of the Angleby CID (A Beautiful...

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DEATH OF A HERO

The eighth and, sadly, the last of the late British author's works featuring Ben Jurnet of the Angleby CID (A Beautiful Death, 1994, etc.). Ben still mourns the death of his beloved Miriam, finding comfort in his love-hate relationship with the Superintendent, his icy superior; in talks with Miriam's Rabbi Schnellman, who was guiding Ben's conversion to Judaism; and in his fond, occasionally sexual friendship with Pnina Benvista, Miriam's ill-formed young Israeli prot‚g‚e, madly in love with him. All this recedes to the background when a huge gathering of unemployed men--thousands strong--encamps on Monkenheath Common, above the town, recalling a famed rebellion of centuries before. Charm-laden Charlie Applegate is spokesperson for the men, working hard to project an affable, nonthreatening presence, but within days he's found, strangled, on the doorstep of prostitute Jenny Nunn, in the town's sleazy Bergate district. Ben's investigation soon uncovers the tight bonding of Charlie, Jenny, Roger Adamson, and his fianc‚e Julian Grant, and the probability that Roger's wealthy Aunt Adeline, a college professor, had funded Charlie's protest march. New complexities arise with the death of Danny Saunders, who'd been separated from his teenage lover Pete Gilbert by Charlie's peremptory command. There are other deaths, all macabre, but little headway is made in the case--until the wedding of Roger and Julian precipitates a chilling solution. All the elements of the author's unique talent are at work here: offbeat characters probed to the bone; plotting that's bizarre but believable, and lyrical writing by turns introspective, pungent, or poetic. She will be missed.

Pub Date: Dec. 17, 1996

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 224

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 1996