An estate agent is stabbed to death in a house he was about to show the prospective and committed buyer. A burned body in found in a car in a canal. And a sixteen-year-old girl is missing. They all seem like isolated crimes, but Detective Inspector Matt Brindle of the Pennines Police and his team slowly come to realize that the various crimes are connected. But it takes a while to figure that out.
The Other Victim by Helen Durrant is the second in the Detective Matt Brindle series, and it’s a complex tale of murder, organized crime, revenge, money laundering, and club dancers gone missing. Brindle is still dealing with a leg injury from an attempt on his life – an attempt which took the life of his police partner. The man the police ordered the hit is likely involved in this set of crimes as well.
Brindle lives with his mother on the family estate – one which needs a lot of work and with no money to pay for it. He convinces his mother to hold a fair and offer house tours. During the fair, his mother is seemingly saved from a robbery attempt by a charming older man, and she becomes quite smitten. Brindle, however, is convinced that the man is up to no good. He doesn’t know just how right he is – and there’s a connection to the crimes he’s investigating.
Durrant has published some 24 mystery books in several series. The first in the Detective Matt Brindle series is The Third Victim. Durrant is a retired teacher and lives in the northwest of England.
The Other Victim is a solid police procedural, but little seems to happen except the investigation for a considerable part of the book. And when things do begin to pop, they come with a rush. And while the estate agent is the first case to be investigated, it ends up being the last to be solved.