The Night Stalker

Written by Clare Donoghue

Review written by Amy Myers

Amy Myers is known for her short stories and historical novels featuring Victorian chef Auguste Didier and chimney sweep Tom Wasp. Her contemporary series features classic car detective Jack Colby, and she is currently working on a new 1920s mystery series featuring Nell Drury, chef at Kent’s Wychbourne Court.


The Night Stalker
Macmillan
RRP: £7.99
Released: August 8 2017
PBK

The Night Stalker is the latest novel in the author’s well received DI Mike Lockyer and DS Jane Bennett series, which are usually set in south London where Lockyer and Bennett are stationed.

In this fourth novel (in the series) they are called down to Somerset to assist DI Bill Townsend in a case set in the Quantock Hills; where there are complications over the death of a London resident. A woman has been burnt to death in a car crash. Is it murder or accident? Is it coincidence or was it planned for the place where she died is close to the site of an eighteenth-century murder referred to locally as Dead Woman’s Ditch, and is now embedded in local folklore.

The relationship between the two police teams is not an easy one, especially as someone on Lockyer and Bennett’s team is personally involved in the case. They are not helped by the fact that the local community is so steeped in its beliefs in local legends that it blurs the investigation. Nevertheless Lockyer and Bennett struggle their way through a Kafka-like mesh of conflicting evidence to a surprising ending.

The author dexterously steers the reader through the maze of the plot, making for a fast read, though sometimes the pace makes the characterisation take second place in this engaging narrative.

The mix of superstition and police procedural works well; while Lockyer and Bennett make a good ongoing team in this interesting police procedural. 



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