Thursday, February 28, 2013
The Sound of Broken Glass by Deborah Crombie
Crystal Palace is an area of South London, but it is also the term for The Great Exhibition, a building moved to Crystal Palace Park in 1854, and destroyed by fire in 1936. Crombie's chapter headings tell the history of the building, and the area. And, the story starts there, fifteen years earlier, when a lonely thirteen-year-old boy meets the widow next door. That meeting changes both of their lives, but it ends in tragedy. And, neither of them could have ever predicted the terrible repercussions of that summer.
Fifteen years later, Kincaid is taking his turn on leave to take care of their foster child, Charlotte, while Gemma is back on the job, now heading up a Murder Investigation Team in South London. She and team are called to the site of a brutal murder in Crystal Palace, where a barrister has been found dead in a hotel room, naked, bound, and strangled. But, their search for a killer takes some unexpected turns. When another barrister is killed the same way, they scramble to find a link between the two victims. And, every clue and every suspect sends them back to Crystal Palace.
The Sound of Broken Glass is a complex mystery with unexpected twists. And the personalities add a wonderful depth to the novel. Duncan Kincaid is eager to return to work, but his hands are tied while Charlotte is so needy. So, he finds ways to stay busy, including a few conversations with people involved in Gemma's case. And, Gemma's assistant, Detective Sergeant Melody Talbot, finds herself jeopardizing the investigation. Crombie is a master at tying all the elements, investigations and personal lives, together to bring the story to a satisfying conclusion. At the same time, she leaves the reader wanting more, eager for the continuation of the stories of Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James.
Every time I read one of Deborah Crombie's books, I think she can't get any better. Every time, she proves me wrong. The Sound of Broken Glass is the latest in a string of riveting, well-written, meaty novels by a master of the police procedural mystery.
Deborah Crombie's website is www.deborahcrombie.com
The Sound of Broken Glass by Deborah Crombie. William Morrow. 2013. ISBN 9780061990632 (hardcover), 359p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.