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Pete Bassett, AVARICE

AVARICE is the second of the six novels written so far by Peter Bassett to feature DI Munro and DS West. Munro is an older man verging on retirement and somewhat despairing about life, and Munro is a younger woman who is desperately searching for purpose. Slowly, they begin a professional relationship and friendship which supplies what each of them needs. Both characters are well developed as is a rather large supporting cast.

Set in the north-west of Scotland, these stories feature solid police work, lots of humor (some of which is uniquely Scottish and may remain mysterious to Americans) and well developed plots. I would skip SHE, the first book in the series and begin with Avarice. Nothing substantial will be lost and the later books are far superior.

Faith Martin, DI Hillary Greene Series

This mystery series featuring DI Hillary Greene, a detective inspector with the Thomas Valley Police in Oxfordshire, England is an excellent set of British police procedural mysteries. Hillary Greene is an interesting character because she is a very capable detective who finds it hard to get ahead because her philandering husband, also a police officer, was posthumously found guilty of corruption. Despite personal and professional challenges she solves crimes with cool professionalism and by working well with both superiors and subordinates alike. It is nice to see a mature adult working as a detective for a change.

If you like mysteries that make you think and have a minimal amount of violence, you will enjoy this series. Since there are plot arcs that carry through several books, I would highly recommend reading them in order.

Peter Grainger, TIME AND TIDE

The is the seventh book in Grainger’s series featuring Detective Sergeant David Smith, and is one of the better British police procedural series I have read. Smith is an intelligent, funny, and believable character with a personal life that nicely complements his work as a police officer. The characters of those who work with him are well developed, and I would strongly recommend reading the series in order so as to fully appreciate this.

If you are a fan of gore, shootouts, and terrifying car chases, this is not the series for you, but if you appreciate intelligent plots and careful detection, you should definitely give this series a chance.

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