When retired police chief
Katherine Sullivan goes to stay with her attorney daughter,
Lizzie, in her old home town, she runs into murder. A young
woman working for Randolph Pierce, son of the town’s
richest family, is found dead, and everything points to Randy
having done the deed. Katherine turns sleuth with her late
husband’s partner and his team to discover whodunit.
This is the first in a new series about Katherine, her family
and life after retirement from the police force. She hasn’t
really retired and carries on with the investigation as though
she were still the chief, angering her rather childish replacement.
Katherine is a widow and her daughter, Lizzie, a new divorcee
with two teenage children, one a classic stroppy teen girl,
and the other a boy with Asperger’s. The plot is simple
and not difficult to guess; there are very few suspects. This
whole aspect of the novel needs beefing up. Ms Barnes’
strongest point is the parts about Katherine’s family
and friends, who are all an engaging bunch, but they do need
more of a plot in order to realize their full potential. This
is not a short novel, and there is plenty of room for more
suspects and more plot strands, so I will watch with interest
for where the author takes Katherine next.