#4 DI Jack Caffrey mystery. Jack, still working in Bristol and still reeling from events in the last book, feels he is being watched by the Tokoloshe, an African mystical creature. He's supposed to have moved on to the next case--the disappearance of a popular footballer's wife from a local drug rehab facility--but he can't help but feel that they missed something on the case before, and he continues to pursue leads.
Meanwhile, DS Phoebe "Flea" Marley, leader of the dive team--who also recover particularly messy, decomposing bodies--continues to deal with her mentally unstable brother Thom, and feels spooked by a diving incident in one of the old quarries--searching for the body of a young woman presumed dead. The cases merge toward one another and become thoroughly enmeshed when Flea makes a horrible discovery about Thom.
I enjoy this series although I've felt these last couple of books haven't been as cohesive as the first couple. There seems to have to be a lot of suspension of disbelief to get on with the story--not necessarily the mystical element, more like the outrageous actions of these two police persons and the totally strange situations they find themselves in.
Very violent and gory, which doesn't bother me, except that it does seem to me that much of it is meant simply to shock rather than to further the story along. The serial killer was not very well developed, and there seemed to be a lot of attention paid to some of the minor side characters, yet both of the main characters seem totally adrift and I hope the author will resolve some of this and settle them a bit next time out.
basically has two plots.
While the whole police force is on the search of a footballers vanished wife Detective Inspector Jack Caffery's thoughts are with his last case and the so called "Tokoloshe" who hasn't been caught (quod vide Ritual
, March 2008) but he's soon distracted by an alleged suicide whom he believes was staged. His investigations lead him into a house of horror filled with glass jars of human skin.
Meanwhile Sergeant Flea Marley, head of the diver unit, has some very different problems. She's been followed by a decaying smell for days until she discovers a very dead body in the trunk of her car which was just lend by her brother Thom. Thom admits it was an accident and that her freaks but soon together with his girlfriend turns against Flea, threatening her to go to the police and blame it on her.
In the beginning I wasn't at all enthusiastic to discover the Muti killings from Hayder's last novel. I wasn't especially excited than and Wasn't now. But as soon as Caffrey turn away from the whole Tokoloshe topic the story took a turn to the better and got interesting. Hayder has an excellent talent to merge two completely different stories with each other without leaving open ends that don't make sense for a continuation.
Now that Jack and Flea both have their dark secrets one might be curious how the series unfolds in the future. One thing is for certain, I want the Tokoloshe to go away.