This is a new author to me but I want to read more by her now. Her main character is a fully realized woman. DCI Kate Daniels has been a detective for many years and has just returned to work after a leave she was required to take after killing a dangerous psychopath. She has also just broken up with her lesbian lover, a police profiler. Despite her heartache and the continuing psychological problems from the previous case, Daniels jumps right back into work on a new case that will sorely tax her both emotionally and physically.
She is dropped by police helicopter beside Hadrian's Wall where the fully dressed body of a young woman has been found. You may remember this wall from history. The Roman's built it to protect the part of England they had firm control of from my ancestors, those darned Scots who insisted on invading to attempt to drive them off the island. Anyway, a retired cop found the body while hiking the wall. It turns out she was a university student and every bone in her body is broken; was she dropped from a plane?
Meanwhile, wealthy but coldly disciplined Adam Finch has reported his daughter Jessica, a student at the same university, has gone missing. Could the body from the wall be hers? There will be two other students missing who look like Jessica. Is this the work of a deranged serial killer? They uncover information about students being forced into prostitution. Is that what's going on here? After all, these young women are tall, pretty blonds.
I loved the way this investigation went on, meanwhile entertained by the relationships between the members of the murder investigation team. They are uniquely individual but also a cohesive team. Clues come about naturally and are followed as such a team would. I never had a "come on" moment in the story.
This is a real nail-biter because of the unfeeling cruelty of the bad guy. I was surprised by his identity but there was a logical (in his mind) reason for his actions. Daniels is frustrated but has dogged determination to solve the mystery no matter what.
Great characters, great plot, a great read.
Highly recommended e-book
Source: publisher, Witness/Impulse Imprint, HarperCollins