First Line: Hero to zero. Cop to corpse.
Three policemen have been killed in the Bath area in the past three months. A sniper is at work; someone who seems to be anywhere and everywhere, able to avoid CCTV cameras and to leave no traces of evidence behind.
Leave it to Chief Superintendent Peter Diamond to begin piecing together clues once he's assigned to the case. How does he do it? By doing things his way, which sounds like radical thinking but isn't. You see, he's actually following procedure by interviewing everyone who might know something-- especially the widows of the dead men.
Diamond must be doing a good job, too-- because he has an up-close-and-personal encounter with the killer... and a very narrow escape. When the evidence compiled begins to suggest that the sniper might actually be a fellow police officer, Diamond is brave enough to go with that theory, even though his colleagues are dead set against it. Diamond finds himself walking a tightrope: trying to find an elusive killer while retaining his team's faith in him.
Award-winning author Peter Lovesey has been on my radar for a long, long time. In fact, I have the first book in this series sitting on a shelf waiting to be read. When I received a copy of Cop to Corpse, I decided to throw all caution to the wind and read it. I am very glad that I did. I wasn't a bit confused by starting a series at book twelve; all Lovesey did was charm me with his leading man, and now I'm determined to read more books about this marvelous creation named Peter Diamond.
There are twists and turns in the plot, there is humor, and there are some genuinely heart-pounding scenes to be savored here. And the characters! Diamond is a gem, but even secondary and minor characters come to life under Lovesey's pen.
Have you ever had such a strong response to a character that it made you very suspicious about him or her? That's what happened to me in reading this book. Someone's reaction to an event seemed way over the top to me, and it made me think, "Wait a second... could it be that...?" In other words, I was right about whodunit very early on, but when I'm reading such a skillfully told tale with such wonderful characters in it, I have but one response-- Who cares?
Cop to Corpse was such a treat, I can't wait to read the earlier adventures of Chief Superintendent Peter Diamond! If you're in the mood for a new police procedural series and haven't tried Peter Lovesey's, come join me in the fun!
Cop to Corpse by Peter Lovesey
Soho Crime ©2012
Hardcover, 304 pages
Genre: Police Procedural, #12 Peter Diamond mystery