#7 Lloyd & Hill British police procedural mystery. It had been over 2 years since I read a book in this series, since I was very disappointed in #6, which went backward and forward in time, was bloated and boring and featured long portions that were written from the POV of the suspects/players in the mystery. It just didn't work for me at all, and was a huge shock after the previously stellar books. Every author's allowed one stinker I guess, and this one gets things back on track.
A fifteen-year-old school girl is battered and strangled on a public green a few days after the opening of school term. Since Lloyd is off on a weeks-long training course, acting boss Judy Hill starts the investigation off with DS Tom Finch assisting. Lloyd comes back a couple of days early at the behest of HIS boss.
There is only one plausible suspect to begin with (save for the ubiquitous "unknown sex fiend") and he is Colin Cochrane, a teacher at the school and celebrity of some note, having been one of England's star runners and now doing the lecture and advertising circuit. Rumor has it that Colin has been having it off with one of the school girls and a letter found in his tracksuit pocket would seem to bear that out. The victim was not, by all accounts, a chaste and virginal fifteen. The body was discovered by Colin's wife while taking their dog for a walk but her story changes slightly from first interview to formal statement such that her husband would be protected with somewhat of an alibi.
You just know he's NOT the guy, and although neither Lloyd or Hill think so either, DS Finch is convinced of it. In pursuing evidence against him, other clues come to light and the murderer eventually found, of course. I did figure out the killer in one of those lightbulb moments, but not until very close to the end, having followed one of McGown's adeptly placed red herrings right to the sea. LOL
I really enjoyed this, and stayed up a bit past my bedtime to finish it off last night. Was especially glad that Lloyd and Hill were featured more prominently again and it wasn't all about the suspects. I very much look forward to continuing on with this series to its end, which unfortunately came too soon as the author died in 2007. Still, I've got six more to read and savor before I'm done.
the charactors are devious ,cunning, charming and truly,trult wicked.
Compelling story of life, love and murder among residents of a small town and particularly the faculty and student body of the local school. Hill and Lloyd never fail to delight!
Another great British police proceedural featuring Det. Insp. Judy Hill and Det. Cheif Insp. Lloyd. The setting is in a school - a couple of handsome instructors inspire adolescent sexual fantasies that take a tragic turn when a 15 year old is strangled. A good read.