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Peter Robinson grew up in Yorkshire but now lives in Canada. His Inspector Banks series has won numerous awards in the US, Britain and Canada.
The inhabitants of Robinson's Yorkshire are a far cry from James Herriot's sturdy farmers. In this literate mystery, Chief Inspector Alan Banks must deal with the vicious stabbing death of a young lesbian in a room illuminated by the light of a crackling fire and a Christmas tree, the murder by starvation of an incestuous old lecher, the slashing to ribbons of a Twelfth Night cast's costumes and the near-fatal strangulation of his newest detective constable, Susan Gay. Banks, seen last in The Hanging Valley, subjects all potential suspects--including past and present spouses and lovers, a group of amateur thespians and members of the police force--to an extended (perhaps too extended) psychological investigation. The puzzle's grip is weakened by some unconvincing red herrings and the detectives' lengthy musings; nevertheless, Robinson, a Toronto resident and winner of the Crime Writers of Canada Best Novel award, creates an appealing Yorkshire setting with evocative descriptions of the wintry town, dales and seaside. ( Aug. )
'The characterizations are unfailingly sharp and subtle' New York Times 'A definite contender for fiction's new top cop' Independent on Sunday 'Watch for those twists - they'll get you every time' IAN RANKIN
The Canadian author of A Dedicated Man ( LJ 7/91) continues the Inspector Alan Banks series, set in Yorkshire, England. Banks and the female first-officer-on-the-scene delve into a viciously murdered woman's past.