Synopses & Reviews
The latest in the critically acclaimed Richard Jury series from the New York Times
bestselling author of The Grave Maurice
and The Blue Last
As he leans over the body of an unidentified five-year-old girl shot in the back on a shabby London street, Superintendent Richard Jury knows he'll be facing one of the saddest investigations of his life. His colleague DI Johnny Blakeley, head of the pedophile unit of NSY, thinks he knows where this child came from an iniquitous house on that same street, owned by well-known financier Viktor Baumann and fronted by a woman named Murchison. Blakeley has been trying to wreck their operation for a long time.
While examining the body of an unidentified woman murdered in the gardens of Declan Scott's estate, Angel Gate, Brian Macalvie, commander of the Devon and Cornwall police, realizes he's been here before. Three years prior, Declan's stepdaughter, four-year-old Flora, was abducted while she and her mother Mary were visiting the Lost Gardens of Heligan. Shortly after that, Mary Scott herself died, and Declan was devastated by the loss of his child and his wife. "He really doesn't need a body in his garden," says Macalvie.
Joined by the intrepid Melrose Plant, now a gardener at Angel Gate, Jury and Macalvie rake over the present and the past in a pub near Launceston called the Winds of Change. With one of their most serpentine investigations under way, all signs point to the guilt of Viktor Baumann, Mary Scott's first husband and Flora's father. But when no one in this case is exactly who he seems, how can Jury be sure?
"For Richard Jury, the death of his cousin apparently his one link to his childhood generates 'an emptiness that he hadn't seen coming' and supplies an existential, melancholic subtext to this 19th outing for the New Scotland Yard detective (after 2002's The Grave Maurice). Bestseller Grimes's finely written, if at times baffling, novel is propelled by an unthinkably horrific crime: an unidentified five-year-old girl is shot dead in a London street. Her autopsy reveals sexual abuse and leads to a London pedophile ring. The girl may be connected to Flora, the abducted child of a particularly loathsome businessman, Viktor Baumann. Three years earlier, during a nasty custody battle with Baumann's ex-wife, four-year-old Flora was kidnapped near her home in Devon. When the unidentified body of a woman turns up on the estate of Flora's putative stepfather, Declan Scott, the convoluted plot begins to come together. Fans will welcome the appearance of Jury's gaggle of humorously eccentric friends and neighbors, including Melrose Plant, who goes undercover as a gardener to ferret out information. In the end, Grimes fails to connect the dots as well as she might have, but that won't prevent this engaging novel from hitting lots of bestseller lists. Agent, Peter Lampack. 8-city author tour. (Aug. 19)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[A] literary mystery that will delight lovers of the genre....The police procedural may never be the same after word gets out about how successful and fulfilling The Winds of Change is as a novel, a mystery, a whodunit, and a pastiche of literary hijinks." Barbara Lipkien Gershenbaum, BookReporter.com
"As it turns out, nothing is quite what it seems at the beginning in this stellar entry in an outstanding series." Booklist
"One of the established masters of the genre." Newsweek
"[Grimes's] gift for evoking mood and emotion is as keen as her talent for inventing a demanding puzzle." The Wall Street Journal
"[Grimes] excels at creating a haunting atmosphere and characters both poignant and preposterous." USA Today
"Grimes is gifted at exploring the private, sometimes horrifying, yet utterly mundane thoughts of ordinary people." San Francisco Chronicle
Richard Jury embarks on the darkest investigation of his career when the dead body of a young London girl leads to the cold case of a missing girl in Launceston-an unsolved mystery that has haunted Police Officer Brian Macalvie for years.
About the Author
Martha Grimes is the bestselling author of eighteen Richard Jury mysteries and also the acclaimed fiction Foul Matter, Cold Flat Junction, Hotel Paradise, The End of the Pier, and The Train Now Departing.