Monday, July 23, 2018

The Girl in the Gallery (The London Murder Mysteries #2), by Alice Castle

Crooked Cat Books, December 2017

Beth Haldane has had some weeks now, to settle into her new, significantly upgraded, position at the Wyatt school, and is taking a few moments on her lunch break to visit the nearby Picture Gallery and view some of her favorite "old friends" amongst the portraits there.

Unfortunately, this involves walking past the tomb of the founders of the Picture Gallery. Beth finds this pretty creepy, and tries to pass it while seeing as little as possible.

This doesn't prevent her from seeing a shocking flash of blood red out of the corner of her eye. Being a responsible adult, she has to check it out.

It's not blood. It's just red backpack.

But there is a body lying on top of the sarcophagus of one of the dead founders. She calls 999, and then she calls her police detective acquaintance, Harry York.

These are two likable, responsible adults, who are not altogether pleased with the attraction between them. I'm pleased to say that, for all Harry's complaints, Beth has learned something from her past experience with finding a dead body, and doesn't willfully place herself alone in the presence of a killer. She has also learned to share information with Harry, even if he's very annoying about a lack of reciprocal sharing, and frets too much for her tastes about budget restrictions on his ability to investigate everything.

Beth and Harry aren't the only characters, or the only relationship, to live and grow and change. The people we've met in Dulwich continue to become fuller, more developed characters, changed by the things that disrupt their lives.

It's a satisfying mystery, with characters I enjoyed spending time with.

Recommended.

I received a free electronic galley of this book from the publisher and am reviewing it voluntarily.