Out of his mind with grief after the senseless murder of his wife Helen in What Came Before He Shot Her, Detective Superintendent Tommy Lynley has been walking along the Cornish coastline for weeks when he stumbles across a dead body. Reluctantly, he becomes part of the police investigation. Half the village seems to have a motive for killing the victim. Old slights and recent fights have festered, pitting family members against each other.
Elizabeth George is noted for the depth of her characterization. Even the supporting characters are well-drawn, complex individuals. But they’re almost uniformly grim and unpleasant people who make bad choices. Aside from the late Helen Lynley, there are few light-hearted cheerful people in George’s books, which can make her books heavy going.