It was here, on writersbrew, that ladki kijhy said, if I like murder mysteries I should read Reginald Hill. Sound advice; that I followed. So, I picked my first book following the legendary Dalziel and sergeant Pascoe. The book was Death Comes as an End. Mid way I googled out it was the 23rd book in the series, close to the very end.
I enjoyed it enough to venture into the series for a 2nd time. This time I started at the beginning. A Clubbable Woman is the 1st book in the series. It turned out to be a good solid murder mystery. Perhaps my only complain being that there could have been a few more cold bodies left around.
The book introduces the crude and almost pedantic Andy Dalziel, with a perfect foil in the educated young Peter Pascoe. I like the fact that Reginald Hill follows the “show not tell” paradigm in letting the readers gradually discover the characters.
So, Dalziel pretty much knows everyone, has been everywhere and gives a damn. Oh and his wife left him! Wonder why.. He is condescending towards his Sergeant. Ego, is it? Young Pascoe is impressionable. Heart quite on his sleeves. Idealistic, perhaps? Competent? For sure. How much? We’ll probably find out.
They are called in when a woman’s head has been bashed in, quite literally. The husband was in the house with a headache and missed the murder of his wife. Just the setup that takes me to a happy place.
Throw in a few nosy neighbors… A smooth talking helpful boyfriend of the daughter whose mother has been murdered and whose father is the possible murderer… A sports club full of male hormones lusting over alluring unavailable women.. and we are all set for an engrossing murder mystery.
False leads, hidden secrets, blackmail, affairs (in plural), adultery, friendship, filial bonding and heavy dose of suspense all have a place in the enjoyable A Clubbable Women.