The Murky World of Timothy Wall is a new novel in the DI Carmichael series of crime novels from the inventive pen of Ian McFadyen (9th in the series).
A local private detective, Timothy Wall, is OK with allowing his secretary to finish a little earlier than normal to go out on a date with her new boyfriend. After all, all he has left to do that afternoon was to meet a new client at 5.20pm.
But who was the stranger watching her leave the building, from the vantage point of a nearby café? Why was he watching her?
Later that night a cleaner employed by a contract cleaning company finds the blood-stained corpse of Timothy Wall in his office.
Stock, the irascible forensic scientist, confirms, with his typical bad grace, that it is, indeed a murder case.
Carmichael and his team of detectives find the case to be a complex one that taxes their combined abilities as never before.
Why? Because Timothy Wall seems to have been loved and hated in equal measures. A considerate and attentive lover, he had the bizarre habit of keeping a red book in which he kept scores of his lovers, using a scoring system only completed after their brief relationship came to an end. And the vast majority of his relationships were brief. And some actually overlapped...
So, could his book (kept throughout his romantic life) hold a clue to his murder?
Or could it be the fact that he was working for the HMRC conducting fraud investigation on their behalf?
Or the Poulter case, which involved trying to locate a missing person, sought by a person who is claiming to be terminally ill?
But is there a link between the murder and the Baybutt family, local bookmakers? After all, one member of the family seemed to have been more than a little satisfied when he heard reports of the death. After all, nobody likes the HMRC, and a local private detective, investigating their tax affairs. And who told the Baybutt family that Wall had died?
There are also added complications for DI Carmichael. His normally loving wife Penny was in a foul mood. And he was worried that Lucy Martin, with whom he had had a brief dalliance whilst they were on a case that had taken them to Winston-Salem in North Carolina several years previously, is returning to work as a member of his team. And Carmichael is unaware that Penny knows at least something of what had taken place.
Could Carmichael and his team disentangle Wall's complex life? Could they work out who had been responsible for the murder? Was it the mysterious new client, Mr Haverstock-Price? And who, exactly, is Haverstock-Price?
This is another thrilling read from Ian McFadyen. We can’t wait to hear more about it.
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