A series of unpromising cases makes DI Andy Horton (Blood on the Sand, 2010, etc.) reconsider his choice of career.
If DCI Lorraine Bliss’s stint at headquarters as a trainer was a relief to many of the men she left temporarily behind at Portsmouth CID, her abrupt return becomes a particular problem for one of them. Bliss is a constant thorn in Horton’s side, especially when she saddles him with the search for Luke Felton. Convicted of murdering young jogger Natalie Raymonds, Luke disappears from the halfway house to which he’s been released on parole. No one particularly wants drug-addicted Felton found: not his wealthy brother Ashley, not his fearful sister Olivia and certainly not Natalie’s husband. Superintendent Uckfield would rather have Andy’s help solving the murder of Venetia Trotman, found dead in her garden. Andy is far from enthusiastic about giving that help. He feels too close to the case because he’d almost completed a deal to buy Venetia’s boat, now missing. Felton’s disappearance also intrudes on his personal space, since the ex-convict had been employed since his parole at Kempton Marine, owned by the father of Horton’s ex-wife Diana. Andy rather hopes Bliss will make good on her threat to cashier him for disrespect in questioning his former father-in-law. But in spite of his personal distaste, and because of his personal connection, Horton presses on to clear up a skein of crime as tangled as one of the harbor’s ancient fishing nets.
Rowson’s latest should please both Andy Horton fans and puzzle aficionados.