When Detective Persephone (Persy) Jonas is forced to work with retired criminal psychologist Dr Marge Labuschagne to solve the murder of a suspected sex offender, suspicion and distrust threaten to derail the investigation. Persy believes the killer is her childhood sweetheart, now turned vicious gangster; Marge is sure the answer lies in the victim’s shady past.
As the women race against time and their own prejudice to hunt the killer, past and present collide, unearthing long buried secrets and lies. As the hunt intensifies they realise they have more in common than they think and are bound in ways they could never have imagined. Finally faced with a ruthless killer, it seems that the darkest secrets are the ones they are hiding from themselves.
I struggled a bit to get into this book for the sole reason that I tend to read to escape from the world and seeing as most of the books are based in places I don’t know this goal is easy whether or not it’s a crime novel, but when you’re reading a book based on places you know and have been to it becomes more personal, much more like picking up the newspaper.
There is a definite correlation between the level of crime in this country and the remarkable number of local authors and the high quality of their thrillers. Racial tensions, resentments and corruption provide a dream (or nightmarish) background to these mysteries, but it still needs talent if these advantages are to be exploited to the full.
Michéle Rowe is the latest writer to succeed in reflecting the specific problems besetting policing while also offering a compelling narrative. One for all the local book clubs to add to their reading lists.
Disclaimer: Penguin books sent me a copy of What hidden lies to read and review.