The latest case for Yorkshire DCI Michael Thackeray and his lover, Bradfield Gazette reporter Laura Ackroyd, is touched off by two very different incidents of drug-related violence.
Steve Maddison is certain that his friend Derek Whitby was pushed from the roof of Priestley House, one of the crumbling flats in the section of Bradfield universally dubbed Wuthering Heights. But there’s no chance that the coppers will look too closely into Derek’s plunge, or even listen to Steve’s insistence that Derek was no longer using heroin. Not when a much higher-profile schoolboy, self-made building supplier Grantley Adams’s son Jeremy, has gotten himself high on Ecstasy at the notorious Carib Club and wandered into the path of a luckless driver that same night. Adams demands a no-holds-barred investigation into the source of the drugs, even though everybody at the Carib Club piously insists they saw nothing, the friends who went clubbing with Jeremy have mostly vanished into the woodwork, and Jeremy himself, questioned by Thackeray’s men, says he can’t remember a thing, has no idea where he got the E, and had certainly never used it before. Thackeray and Ackroyd (Deep Freeze, 2003, etc.) tackle the case from different angles bound to provoke still more fireworks in the troubled town and between themselves.
Hall is unsparing as ever in tracing the consequences of corruption, though, as Thackeray admits at the close, “there’s a lot of loose ends.”