Lovesey, Peter. Bloodhounds.

NY: Mysterious Press, 1996.

Detective Superintendent Peter Diamond is back in charge of the murder squad in Bath after a couple of years on the sidelines (due largely to his own abrasive personality), and he’s itching for a good murder case. Unfortunately for him, Bath isn’t a hotbed of homicide.

While he twiddles his thumbs and annoys his subordinates, we’re introduced to the Bath Bloodhounds, a small group of mystery and crime novel aficionados, through the eyes of Shirley-Ann Miller, a young tour guide, who reads everything. When a rhyming riddle is delivered to the media warning of the imminent theft of something unnamed but valuable, the cops are all over it but get it completely wrong. And then one of the Bloodhounds is caught up in the aftermath of the theft. And another member of the group is murdered — in a locked narrowboat on the canal. Diamond is a practical man with no use for fictional crime-solving, but suddenly he has his own “locked room” mystery to deal with. And it won’t be the only death connected to the Bloodhounds.

Lovesey has done a pretty good job with the plot and the characters, even when he’s making fun of the Golden Age of mystery novels, because he writes that sort of thing himself. He has also mellowed out Diamond considerably since the first couple of volumes in this series, which is all to the good.

Published in: on 24 April 2014 at 5:27 pm  Leave a Comment  
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