The Seagull - another terrific mystery from Ann Cleeves
The Seagull A Vera Stanhope Mystery by Ann Cleeves St. Martin's Press Minotaur Books Mystery & Thrillers Pub Date 05 Sep 2017
Once again Anne Cleeves has given readers and her heroine Vera exactly what they want - a challenge. When an inmate, a former superintendent and colleague of her father, offers Vera the whereabouts of the body of a long missing man in exchange for checking in on his troubled daughter, she has doubts. Instead, not one body but two are discovered- the second an unidentified female. Who was the woman? What were her links with Vera’s father and his Gang of Four? But confronting the past has its costs as Brace’s son in law is murdered. Is Brace playing a game? Or is someone else determined to hide a murder? What are the links to the glamorous and notorious club The Seagull?
The Seagull is a fantastic mystery that allows Vera’s qualities to shine. Her energetic approach to investigating, her boundless curiosity and need to find information no matter how unrelated and her ability to connect with people all serve her well. Vera may not be a social butterfly but she is wonderful at seeing into people and getting them to open up. The affect she has on Brace’s daughter is amazing.
Some authors falter when they have written a longer series, relying on the memory of readers. Cleeves doesn't fall in this trap. Her vibrant depictions of Vera and her team breathe life into her novels. When you add in her unique and well developed plots it is no wonder that Vera continues to be one of the most popular characters in Britain today. The Seagull is a wonderful addition to the series.
5 / 5
I received a copy of The Seagull from the publisher and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
From Ann Cleeves, winner of the CWA Diamond Dagger Award, comes The Seagull. A visit to her local prison brings DI Vera Stanhope face to face with an old enemy: former detective superintendent, and now inmate, John Brace. Brace was convicted of corruption and involvement in the death of a gamekeeper – and Vera played a key part in his downfall. Now, Brace promises Vera information about the disappearance of Robbie Marshall, a notorious wheeler-dealer who disappeared in the mid-nineties, if she will look out for his daughter and grandchildren. He tells her that Marshall is dead, and that his body is buried close to St Mary’s Island in Whitley Bay. However, when a search team investigates, officers find not one skeleton, but two. This cold case case takes Vera back in time, and very close to home, as Brace and Marshall, along with a mysterious stranger known only as ‘the Prof’, were close friends of Hector, her father. Together, they were the 'Gang of Four’, regulars at a glamorous nightclub called The Seagull. Hector had been one of the last people to see Marshall alive. As the past begins to collide dangerously with the present, Vera confronts her prejudices and unwanted memories to dig out the truth . . . The Seagull is a searing new novel by Sunday Times bestselling author Ann Cleeves, about corruption deep in the heart of a community, and fragile, and fracturing, family relationships.