Common Murder by Val McDermid



Common murder Common MurderVal McDermid; Spinsters Ink 1995WorldCat

In this mystery written in the 1980’s, Lindsay Gordon is an English journalist whose job can be all-demanding. This causes problems in her home life with her partner, Cordelia. Then a story comes up in the Women’s Peace Camp outside an American Air Force Base. Lindsay goes to write the story because she has already been involved with the group. There she discovers that an old partner, Deborah, has been accused of assault. When the man who filed the complaint is found dead the next day, Deborah is the prime suspect.

Between her boss at the newspaper and her friends at the peace camp, let alone her feelings for Deborah, Lindsay soon finds herself involved not only as a journalist, but as a detective as well. There are some odd pieces that she can’t rectify. Why is there a government agent constantly on her tail? Why is a uniform police man in charge of the investigation rather than the detectives? Why do strange codes appear in accounting files? The investigation becomes more deadly when Deborah is attacked during a peace vigil. Lindsay soon finds her life in danger as well.

The search for the truth has one positive effect. When her life is under attack, she is able to see clearly and set her personal priorities. But, will she live long enough to carry them through and tell the people involved?

This is a mystery that isn’t sure if it wants to be a mystery or a spy novel. It becomes some of each. It never found a focus in my opinion. I admire Lindsay’s tenacity at the end of the book. She stumbled into a story that had world wide repercussions. And she stuck with it.

This book is the second in a series featuring Lindsay. I won’t be bothering with the others. I will instead look for McDermid’s more recent novels. Since I read A Place of Execution first, I know McDermid is an excellent writer of suspense.

Notice: Suggestive dialogue or situations

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