Two self-proclaimed spooks complicate DI Sebastian McGregor’s inquiry into the death of a software engineer.
All Frantham reacts when Paul de Freitas is found aboard his yacht, The Greek Girl, shot execution-style. Who was the other man who shared de Freitas’s fate, and why was he on the yacht? Why did Paul’s brother Edward, co-owner of Iconograph software development firm, know nothing about his companion? Why did Paul leave his sister Lydia a copy of A.A. Milne’s When We Were Very Young? Rina Martin, the sympathetic proprietress of Peverill Lodge, has the best shot at questioning Lydia, but DI McGregor interrupts her. Mac doesn’t want even as accomplished a sleuth as Rina in the line of fire—especially not when William Hale, with credentials from MI5, suggests that Paul was engaged in specialized defense work, and repeatedly shows up inside Mac’s crime scene tape. Abe Jackson, who also purports to represent the Ministry of Defense, takes a different tack, scooping up Iconograph designer Lindsey Barnes because he thinks she’s in danger from de Freitas’s enemies, possibly including Hale. Supported by his burgeoning relationship with pathologist Miriam Hastings, Mac has to figure out who’s the real deal, while keeping Edward, Lydia and especially Rina and her eccentric brood of boarders safe from whatever menace Paul’s espionage has visited on them.
Spy vs. spy rendered life-size by deft plotting and judicious clueing. Despite its hectic pace, a worthy successor to Fragile Lives (2008).