DEATH SQUAD
Roy Lewis

 


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Allison & Busby, Oct 2006
Reviewed by Sunnie Gill

Solicitor Eric Ward is defending Dieter Barschel, a retired semi-professional soccer player who is charged with drug dealing at a Newcastle racecourse. Detective Chief Inspector Charlie Spate is in charge of the investigation. When the suspect is acquitted, Ward knows he hasnít made a friend in Spate. Spate himself is in hot water because of some inconsistencies in the case. He is suspended from duty because his superiors believe the suspect could have been the victim of a set up. The arrest was made on the basis of a tip off from a prostitute Spate has been seeing, but he canít tell the powers that be this information. Spate realises Barshel isnít the only one who has been set up.

The best way for Spate to clear his name is to talk to Barshel, but Barshel has been murdered. Spate and Ward find they have to overcome their dislike of each other and work together to discover who murdered Barschel.

DEATH SQUAD is the fifteenth Charlie Spate novel. Perhaps I suffered from not being acquainted with earlier books in the series. I didnít particularly warm to Spate who didnít seem to be a fully developed character. The mystery was engaging enough, but the ending felt rushed. It was as if the author was suddenly told he only had a dozen pages to wrap everything up and in doing so things had to be squashed in to fit. It is difficult to explain exactly why I felt this way without spoiling the ending. Suffice to say that it was anti-climactic and unsatisfying.

May 2008 review originally posted on Murder and Mayhem

 

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