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Gone Astray
A Constable "Thorny" Deepbriar Mystery - Book IV
Jean Rowden

Robert Hale
31 May 2012 / ISBN 9780709098126
Historical Mystery1957Yorkshire, England
Amazon US - UK

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde

Constable "Thorny" Deepbriar's life has changed recently, and all for the better. His wife is expecting their first child after having given up hope of having a family, and he has been promoted to Farnborough CID. With this brings new responsibilities and new problems - they must vacate the police house but have nowhere to go, and a child has gone missing. It is thought that she has been abducted, and everybody fears that she won't be seen again alive. At the same time local factories are being broken into, but only petty cash is stolen - why? Thorny must solve all these problems, even if he gets into serious trouble himself as he does so.

I find myself looking forward to each new addition to this absorbing and well-made series. Fans of the late TV show Heartbeat will no doubt agree, as this series has everything a nostalgic histmyst ought to contain: a well researched background, authentic cases, local characters and it is even set in rural Yorkshire! Ms Rowden paints a convincing picture of life in such a location in the 1950s, from a constable's duties to the ways of life of the various characters. As this deals with child abduction and all it implies, this is not exactly a "cozy," although it has all the trappings of one, including the way the case is described. Like plunging into a warm bath on a cold night, this is one book you will want to curl up with, purring cat and cup of tea optional. I hope I don't have to wait too long for the next instalment of Thorny's adventures.

Reviewed 2012