Detective Inspector Geraldine Steel returns in an exhilarating case of grisly murder in London. When a successful businessman is brutally murdered, the police suspect his glamorous wife and her young lover. Then the victim's business partner suffers the same gruesome fate and when yet another body is discovered, seemingly unrelated to the first two, the police are baffled. The only clue is DNA that leads them to two women: one dead, the other in prison. With a steady stream of bodies arriving at the morgue, can DI Geraldine Steel find the killer before another deadly attack?
Leigh Russell studied at the University of Kent and now works as a secondary school teacher, specialising in supporting pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties. Her first novel, Cut Short (2009) was shortlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger Award for Best First Novel. Road Closed (2010) was listed as a Top Read on Eurocrime and, with Dead End (2011), series protagonist Geraldine Steel became the #1 best-selling female sleuth on Amazon Kindle.
©2013 Leigh Russell (P)2013 Audible Ltd
"Stop Dead is taut and compelling, stylishly written with a deeply human voice." (Peter James)
I really should not have downloaded another Geraldine Steel book after being so disappointed by books 2 and 3. However I really loved book 1 and felt in the mood for an easy listening police procedural. I am afraid that the quality of the writing and narration of this book were so poor that I felt embarrassed to even be listening to it and did not finish it.
"The Bones of a Good Story There"
This book was released in the Kindle version and the Audible version but not yet available in paperback, which I thought was an interesting inversion of the windowing used by some publishers. This is the Fifth Geraldine Steel book, but the first one I have read. It's ok as a stand alone.
I tried not to let the fact that there was a glossary of English police acronyms at the beginning bother me-- but you can tell it did. I told myself that probably some readers aren't fans of English police procedurals and need to have it explained that DS means Detective Sergeant. However, I did feel a little talked down to and figured the situation would have been better solved with a little judicious editing.
The plot centers around the grotesque murder of the owner of a restaurant frequented by celebrities. I think that the author's decision to start off with a prologue that takes certain characters out of the running for the killer right away is a mistake. The suspense could have been ratcheted up there. Certain plot threads just get dropped along the way, which may happen in real police investigations, but are annoying in fiction.
Also, I have real doubt that the will that impels part of the plot would have been let stand as written under English law.
Someone compared it to the Prime Suspect novels, but its a much blander story than Ms. LaPlante's tales of a female officer on her way up the professional ladder.
I will say I did enjoy the narrator very well. That alone may make me back up and listen to a couple of the earlier books.
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