Hastings District Libraries

Monday, 11 December 2017

Guilty Waters by Priscilla Masters

Joanna Piercy is the cycling, psychology graduate Detective Inspector who stars in over a dozen novels by Priscilla Masters, with Guilty Waters being the twelfth. Working out of Leek in Staffordshire, Joanna becomes concerned when French mother, Cécile Bellange arrives in the district, looking for her daughter Annabelle and her friend Dorothée. The flirty seventeen-year-olds are due to start their university courses soon and were expected home weeks ago.

Keen on Kippling, the girls were entranced by Lake Rudyard, where they were last heard of, so Joanna begins her investigation here. Suspects soon mount up – there are the two climbing brothers, Martin and James Stuart who discover a postcard from the girls while letterboxing – a hobby which is a bit like orienteering with secret messages. Then there’s creepy Mr Barker who runs the Mandalay B&B who turns out to be a pervert, but is he twisted enough to commit murder?

Guilty Waters is a fairly decent character-driven police procedural, with an interesting storyline and an evocative setting that’s sure to appeal. I enjoyed the back-story of Joanna and new husband, Matthew Levin, who works alongside Joanna from time to time as the police pathologist. Their relationship has evidently been running through the series from book one, and they are currently thinking about having a child together.

The DI Piercy mysteries would be a perfect go-to series for anyone looking for a relaxing weekend read that isn’t too taxing, a little in the same vein as novels by Ann Cleeves and Louise Penny.

Posted by JAM

Catalogue link: Guilty Waters

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