NY: Morrow, 2010.
Twenty-three years ago, this author began a series of detective novels set in the Yorkshire Dales in the north of Britain (a region Londoners traditionally regard as being not far from the edge of the Earth), featuring a prickly, mavericky detective inspector named Alan Banks. He was a sort-of refugee from London himself, facing burnout after a series of physically wearing and emotionally draining cases, and hoping for some kind of redemption Up North. He arrived with a wife and two small children and set about learning the local ropes, which were quite different from the South. Even though I’m a “professional” reader, I somehow only discovered the series myself about three years ago and was almost immediately captivated by the character of now DCI Banks and the supporting players, by the author’s view of the Dales (he’s originally from there, of course), and by the cases with which the police force of Eastvale and environs have had to deal. (more…)