- Length: 400pp
- Text Publishing: 3 November 2020
- ISBN: 9781922330260
- #3 Paul Hirschhausen series
Synopsis (Text Publishing)
In Consolation, Tiverton’s only police officer Constable Paul Hirschhausen is dealing with a snowdropper. Someone is stealing women’s underwear, and Hirsch knows how that kind of crime can escalate. Then two calls come in: a teacher who thinks a child may be in danger at home. A father on the rampage over at the primary school.
Hirsch knows how things like that can escalate, too. Families under pressure. Financial problems. But it’s always a surprise when the killing starts.
But life is never boring. There is always something that needs to be done, and he is not on his own. His supervising sergeant lives in the neighbouring town of Redruth. When she is hurt early in this novel Hirsch has to take charge. He doesn't usually have the luxury of being able to focus on a single case; he often has many strings to his bow, many little mysteries to solve. When something major happens - perhaps a shooting or a disappearance - then the investigation is often taken out of local hands by senior officers from Port Pirie or even Adelaide. Often these teams will treat Hirsch or even his sergeant as if they have no local knowledge.
The structure of these novels reminds me of those I used to read years ago before I became a crime fiction addict - novels like Dr. Findlay's Casebook by A.J. Cronin, or The Hills is Lonely by Lillian Beckwith. In the case of the Hirsch novels, (of which there are now 3) many balls are being juggled at once, and there is a strong flavour of what it would be like to live in a remote mid-North town, and a sense of the community repercussions of a single crime.
My rating: 5.0