Janice Frost, DEAD SECRET
This is the first in a series of police procedural mysteries featuring Detectives Jim Neal and Ava Merry. They are set in the fictitious East Midlands cathedral city of Stromford. This first novel in the series is an investigation of the murder of a teenage girl.
These novels work well because Neal and Merry have very different personalities, but both are devoted detectives who over the course of the series become more drawn to each other. I’ve read the entire series so far, and found that the novels only get stronger as it goes along. Because there is a development arc, they should be read in order.
As a regular reader of this blog may have noticed, I have been focussing heavily as of late on British procedurals. This is because I feel that they frequently offer a good balance between action, suspense, and thoughtful detection. Also, although not completely lacking in violence – they are murder mysteries, after all – they do not rely on graphic violence or indiscriminate killing to hold the reader’s interest. If you agree that this is an enjoyable type of mystery, why don’t you let me know?