What’s it about?
DCI Grace Macallan’s career has hit a serious roadblock. When a covert police operation in Northern Ireland goes badly wrong, she’s faced with a painful decision – lie to save a young officer’s career or tell the truth and ruin her own reputation. For Grace, there can be only one answer.
Reassigned to the newly formed Lothian & Borders Major Crime Team, Grace Macallan is forced to rebuild her career and her reputation. But when a brutal attack on a prostitute turns into a series of murders, the Major Crime Team is under serious pressure. The tabloid headlines are lurid and the team badly needs a result.
With a new life to build in a new city, a new boss as smooth as an 18-year-old malt and a very high profile lawyer as the chief suspect, Grace soon begins to wonder if telling the truth is always the right thing to do.
Hellooo gorgeous cover! It really was the cover that did it. I saw another blogger was reading this and I thought this cover was so tantalizing, I just wanted to read it without even knowing fully well what it was about!
Cause of Death took a slow start for me, especially if you are used to detectives getting involved into new cases a few pages into a novel. This was not the case as Peter Richie took its time showing first how everything works at the station where Grace finds herself on her first day and he explains where she is coming from and why she had no choice but to ask for a transfer. It wasn’t always easy for me to understand the language and references to the situation in Northern Ireland being a foreign reader (I’d never heard of ‘peelers’ before just to name one) but I do now! It did stump my enjoyment a little bit though that I wasn’t in on the lingo.
The writer, Mr. Peter Ritchie, is a retired senior police officer and his extensive expertise is dripping from the pages. It feels like he was there, like this is all very authentic. Cause of Death reads like a true crime novel, a police procedural turned real. It was interesting to see the interaction between detectives Grace, Mick and O’Connor, the politics in the office and outside. I really liked old-school copper Mick with a drinking problem but who got results nonetheless.
If you like to read a ‘true to life’ detective novel you might want to check this one out. Personally, I think I like the more romanticized versions, but don’t let that stop you!
I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.