Two cases collide for newly promoted Detective Superintendent Henry Christie.
Felix Deakin, mobster extraordinaire, is so unwilling to serve out his full term in Lancashire Prison that he tells his lawyer and the crown prosecutor Naomi Dale that he’d be glad to testify against a rival gangster in court. Thrilled, they agree, but their plans go belly up when the wily Deakin, even more unwilling than they thought, escapes en route from court. DS Henry Christie, newly reunited with his wife but still up for a quick tumble with Naomi, is assigned the job of finding Deakin. Genteel readers may not care for all the torture and corpses Christie encounters in his quest, but they nicely echo the torture and corpses surrounding ex-cop Steve Flynn, now captaining fishing tours in the Canary Islands and, as Deakin sees it, living high off the million English pounds Flynn confiscated from him in a drug raid. Flynn is forced to deal with the murder of his girlfriend and the explosion of his boat. But what sends him back to England to confront Deakin is the villain’s abduction of his son, for whose release he demands the million pounds. When Flynn offers his help in finding Deakin, Christie reluctantly consents. The result is an unexpected twist and a sizzling wrap-up.
Oldham (The Nothing Job, 2009, etc.) stands beside Bill James as another tough, undervalued practitioner of police procedurals, none more astounding than this.