17 February 2015

Review: DEAD HEADING, Catherine Aird

  • first published by Allison & Busby 2013
  • ISBN 978-0-7490-1388-2
  • 287 pages
  • source: my local library
  • #23 in the Sloan and Crosby Mystery series
Synopsis (Fantastic Fiction)

When Jack Haines reports a break-in at his greenhouse, the motive of the intruder is unclear. Other than the destruction of some expensive orchids, no damage has been done, and nothing seems to be missing. But Detectives Sloan and Crosby sense something sinister, and soon their suspicions are confirmed. Similar reports are multiplying and sabotage is the word on everyone's lips.

The pair is drawn into an equally perplexing case when the mysterious Miss Enid Maude Osgathorp goes missing. Investigations begin at her deserted abode, Canonry Cottage, where the detectives soon discover that the house has been ransacked. Shattered glass is found in the larder, and traces of blood spatter are found on the floors. Something disturbing has undoubtedly taken place, but Sloan and Crosby can't figure out who did it, or why.

As it becomes clear that the two cases are linked, the two detectives must work to find the missing woman, and how she connects to the greenhouse burglary, before it is too late.

Dead Heading is the 23rd book in Catherine Aird's series following Detective Chief Inspector C.D. Sloan.

My Take

I decided to borrow this from my local library after seeing a tribute to Catherine Aird on Martin Edwards' blog after the CWA announced she had been awarded the Diamond Dagger for sustained excellence in her work.
Edwards says
    Her plots are clever, her characters and situations are entertaining,and her humour a real bonus..
Despite the number of books Aird has written (see Fantastic Fiction for the list), I have never reviewed one in the history of this blog.

DEAD HEADING was true to Edwards' summary: a clever two-pronged plot where the strands finally merge, but it is hard to see for most of the book how they will. A cozy in the British tradition and a fine mystery. I also enjoyed the characters of the two main detectives and their boss. It didn't seem to matter that I had come in at the end, rather than the beginning, of the series.And there is a fine touch of humour - quirky little quotations, references to other well known novels and writers and so on.

My rating: 4.3


Margot Kinberg said...

Oh, I'm glad you enjoyed this, Kerrie. I think it is a good series.

Kathy D. said...

I read Henrietta Who? and loved it.

I'm not much of a cozy reader, but this one pulled me in and made me laugh and wonder how the resolution would turn out. It is a lovely book, and I am going to read more books by Aird.


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