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An abandoned Southwark warehouse burns next door to a women's shelter for victims of spousal abuse. Within it lies the charred corpse of a female body burned beyond all recognition. At the same time, workers at Guy's Hospital anxiously discuss the disappearance of a hospital administrator -- a beautiful, emotionally fragile young woman who's vanished without a trace.

And in an old, dark, rambling London house, nine-year-old
Harriet's awful fears won't be silenced -- as she worries about her
feuding parents, her schoolwork . . . and the strange woman who
is her only companion in this scary, unfamiliar place.

Gemma James and Duncan Kincaid -- lovers and former partners -- have their own pressing concerns. But they must put aside private matters to investigate these disturbing cases. Yet neither Gemma nor Duncan realize how closely the cases are connected -- or how important their resolutions will be for an abducted young child who is frightened, alone . . . and in serious peril.

Topics: Scotland Yard and Kidnapping

Published: HarperCollins on Oct 13, 2009
ISBN: 9780061829703
List price: $4.99
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An abandoned warehouse burns next door to a women's shelter for victims of spousal abuse, an apparent case of arson. But it is the charred corpse within -- a female body burned beyond all recognition -- combined with the political sensitivity of the case, that entangles Superintendent Duncan Kincaid in its twisted skein.At the same time, Kincaid's lover and former partner, Gemma James, is coping with twin crises of her own, one personal and the other professional. Gemma must put her private concerns aside to investigate the disappearance of a hospital administrator, a beautiful, emotionally fragile young woman who vanished without a trace. Yet neither Gemma nor Kincaid realizes how closely their cases are connected -- or how important the resolutions will be for a young child who was a victim of parental abduction.In an old, dark, rambling house, nine-year-old Harriet worries about her feuding mum and dad, her friends, her schoolwork. Most of all, she worries about the strange woman who is her only companion in this scary, unfamiliar place. The events that led her there happened too quickly and are too complicated for a child to fully comprehend. But despite her youth and innocence, Harriet's awful fears will not be silenced: that she may never see her parents again ... and that her own life is in serious peril.I liked the way you get an in depth view of characters other than Kincaid and James - Rose the firefighter, Kincaid's sergeant Cullen, the locum priest Winnie, Fanny the young Asian woman fighting a debilitating disease. Lots of lovely strands all meshed together in a plausible yarn.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
With Kit's hearing with the judge over his grandmother's attempt to gain custody of him a few days away, Duncan is put on a homicide that occurred in a suspicious warehouse fire in Southwark that could be arson. Three women from the area are missing. The child of one of the women is also missing. Although it is Duncan's case, Gemma gets involved because her priest friend calls her to report one of the missing women. There's plenty to commend this book including a very smart female firefighter. Another strong entry in this series!read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
In the London borough of Southwark, in the wee hours of the morning, a vacant warehouse burns. What initially appears to be a routine fire becomes anything but routine when, first, a woman's naked body is discovered in the flames, and second, investigators learn that the building is owned by a prominent member of parliament. Scotland Yard detective Duncan Kincaid is assigned to the case and must diplomatically deal with, not just the politics of the situation, but also the tensions with the Southwark police, who resent the Yard's intrusion into their territory. Meanwhile, Duncan's significant other and former partner, Gemma James, becomes involved in the search for a missing woman who lived just a few blocks away from the burned warehouse. When it appears that their cases may be connected, Duncan and Gemma work together to solve the mysteries.Crombie juggles several plot threads that eventually converge and finally resolve. She skillfully maintains a consistent degree of tension across the various threads, resulting in smooth transitions between scenes. Few writers could pull off a plot filled with so many coincidences, but under Crombie's hand they're hardly noticeable. Ultimately, though, there are too many coincidences to survive close examination of the plot, so I can't give it 5 stars.The book can be read as a stand-alone. However, the development of Duncan and Gemma's relationship and family situation is one of the main features of the series. Readers who find this aspect of the series appealing will want to read the books in order.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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An abandoned warehouse burns next door to a women's shelter for victims of spousal abuse, an apparent case of arson. But it is the charred corpse within -- a female body burned beyond all recognition -- combined with the political sensitivity of the case, that entangles Superintendent Duncan Kincaid in its twisted skein.At the same time, Kincaid's lover and former partner, Gemma James, is coping with twin crises of her own, one personal and the other professional. Gemma must put her private concerns aside to investigate the disappearance of a hospital administrator, a beautiful, emotionally fragile young woman who vanished without a trace. Yet neither Gemma nor Kincaid realizes how closely their cases are connected -- or how important the resolutions will be for a young child who was a victim of parental abduction.In an old, dark, rambling house, nine-year-old Harriet worries about her feuding mum and dad, her friends, her schoolwork. Most of all, she worries about the strange woman who is her only companion in this scary, unfamiliar place. The events that led her there happened too quickly and are too complicated for a child to fully comprehend. But despite her youth and innocence, Harriet's awful fears will not be silenced: that she may never see her parents again ... and that her own life is in serious peril.I liked the way you get an in depth view of characters other than Kincaid and James - Rose the firefighter, Kincaid's sergeant Cullen, the locum priest Winnie, Fanny the young Asian woman fighting a debilitating disease. Lots of lovely strands all meshed together in a plausible yarn.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
With Kit's hearing with the judge over his grandmother's attempt to gain custody of him a few days away, Duncan is put on a homicide that occurred in a suspicious warehouse fire in Southwark that could be arson. Three women from the area are missing. The child of one of the women is also missing. Although it is Duncan's case, Gemma gets involved because her priest friend calls her to report one of the missing women. There's plenty to commend this book including a very smart female firefighter. Another strong entry in this series!
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
In the London borough of Southwark, in the wee hours of the morning, a vacant warehouse burns. What initially appears to be a routine fire becomes anything but routine when, first, a woman's naked body is discovered in the flames, and second, investigators learn that the building is owned by a prominent member of parliament. Scotland Yard detective Duncan Kincaid is assigned to the case and must diplomatically deal with, not just the politics of the situation, but also the tensions with the Southwark police, who resent the Yard's intrusion into their territory. Meanwhile, Duncan's significant other and former partner, Gemma James, becomes involved in the search for a missing woman who lived just a few blocks away from the burned warehouse. When it appears that their cases may be connected, Duncan and Gemma work together to solve the mysteries.Crombie juggles several plot threads that eventually converge and finally resolve. She skillfully maintains a consistent degree of tension across the various threads, resulting in smooth transitions between scenes. Few writers could pull off a plot filled with so many coincidences, but under Crombie's hand they're hardly noticeable. Ultimately, though, there are too many coincidences to survive close examination of the plot, so I can't give it 5 stars.The book can be read as a stand-alone. However, the development of Duncan and Gemma's relationship and family situation is one of the main features of the series. Readers who find this aspect of the series appealing will want to read the books in order.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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