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by Susan Hill

Pub Date: March 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-1-56567-929-0
Publisher: Overlook

A nightmarish case is at the center of Hill’s third book starring DCI Simon Serrailler (The Pure in Heart, 2007, etc.).

Serrailler is in Yorkshire to collaborate with the CID team on their missing-child case when they catch a lucky break. A little girl is snatched, but this time a witness identifies the car. A high-speed chase ends when Serrailler traps the suspect on a seaside ledge and finds the child safe in the car boot. The identity of the kidnapper is shocking. Although she calls herself Ed, Edwina Sleightholme is that rare bird, a female serial killer. She refuses to talk, but forensics prove that she had missing children. Now the police just need to find the bodies. Back home in Lafferton, Serrailler, a talented artist who craves more excitement in his career, is restless and unhappy. At a successful London gallery show of his work, he meets his spurned lover Diana and spends a night with her. His beloved sister Cat is furious with his selfishness and not best pleased when Serrailler is attracted to Jane Fitzroy, an Anglican priest who has just been held captive by a grief-crazed widower who thinks she is his dead wife. The widower threatens others, the bodies surface and Serrailler gets his just deserts.

Disappointingly short on mystery, but fleshes out the provocative character of Serrailler, who one hopes will do more detecting next time.