At an auction house in Bath, England, a large slab of carved stone is up for sale. At the height of what turns into very competitive bidding, there is a holdup attempt by three masked raiders who are trying to steal the stone. They shoot and kill the highest bidder, a professor who has recognized the female figure carved in the stone as the Wife of Bath from Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. The masked would-be thieves flee, leaving the stone behind.
Peter Diamond and his team are assigned to investigate, and the stone is moved into Diamond's office so he can research its origins. The carving causes such difficulties that he starts to think it has jinxed him. Meanwhile, as Diamond's leads take him to Chaucer's house in Somerset, his intrepid colleague Ingeborg goes undercover to try to track down the source of the handgun used in the fatal murder.
©2014 Peter Lovesey (P)2014 SoHo Publishing
then you'll adore Chief Inspector Diamond. Peter Lovesey has
a wonderfully developed cast of characters whom are both as witty and quirky as any of the characters of the Three Pines series. His stories are engaging with great dialogue and engrossing mysteries that are, of course, solved by the great Chief Inspector himself...most of the time. As with the Three Pines series, when the book is over there is a sense of saying goodbye to all of your friends.
Simon Prebble is brilliant in all his narrations of this series and his performance even reminds me of the late Ralph Cosham.
It isn't very fair to Peter Lovesey or Simon Prebble that I have compared their professional creativity to other people. Their art stands on its own. Had I read Lovesey before I read Penny, then, assuredly, the comparison would be the other way around. Both series are charming, well-written, with fabulous character development and outstanding narration.
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