Daily Review: The Paper Boy by Diana J Febry
September 18, 2019
Diana keeps the reader on the edge of their seat, setting up a host of suspects with motives.
A stand-alone murder mystery featuring DCI Peter Hatherall.
A young mother brutally stabbed in a busy park in front of her son.
A paperboy shot in an isolated farmhouse twenty-four years previously.
DI Fiona Williams is baffled when her senior officer, DCI Peter Hatherall makes a connection between the two cases.
As details of Hatherall’s involvement in the old case emerge, her loyalty is tested to breaking point and she starts to question his decisions.
When the murdered woman’s son goes missing the time for hesitating is over.
By Allen M Werner
April 1994, PC Peter Hatherall is part of an investigation into the shooting death of Jeff Powell, a paperboy in the small village of Mickleburgh.
Peter is young and learning the job. Despite a recent tragedy in his private life, he boldly stands up to his superiors. His supervisor, Malcolm O’Toole, runs what Hatherall considers a shoddy investigation, clinging onto unsubstantiated evidence, leaving too many questions unanswered, forgoing too many leads, making too many assumptions. It nearly ruins Peter’s career It does send, what Peter believes, two innocent men to prison.
Fast forward twenty-four years later and a woman named Amanda Beresford is stabbed to death in a park. The only witness to the murder is her young son.
When an old photograph is discovered hidden away in a locked drawer at Amanda’s home, the words ‘Mickle April 1994’ written on the back, alarm bells go off in Peter Hatherall’s head.
The now seasoned DCI teams up with his partner Fiona, and they reopen a case many don’t want revisited.
The stakes get even higher when a friend of the murdered woman whom the police had interviewed and shown the photograph, goes missing.
The Paper Boy is the 6th installment in the DCI Peter Hatherall Mystery collection.
The author, Diana J Febry, has proven once again, she knows her way around these small-town crime tales, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat with her attention to detail and setting up a host of suspects with motives.
The characters are real, and those who have read previous stories in the Hatherall Mysteries will see the growth in Peter and Fiona. This book is a must-read for all lovers of this genre. 5 Stars!
Having read all the previous books in the Peter Hatherall Mystery series, I was quick to grab this one. And like all the others, this standalone story did not disappoint.
Hatherall and his partner Fiona Williams team up once again with smart dialogue in this fast-paced mystery. Two murders are tied together from Hatherall: one recent and another some twenty-plus years prior. What starts out with Williams not understanding the connection goes deeper.
To doubting her partner, questioning his decision-making. What was great writing here is how Febry connected the earlier murder to deepening Hatherall’s character. As Hatherall and Williams navigate the case they face internal and external conflicts which intensified the storyline conflict/tension and propel the plot along at a rapid clip.
I especially like the interactions between the partners and the ostensibly rejected invitation halfway through the story, which played into Fiona’s internal self-conscious dialogue when she arrived at work the next morning and was excluded from a conversation Peter was involved in.
Lots of good relationship interchanges with them and others unfolded throughout the story’s narrative. But ultimately it was the mystery, the questions I wanted answered that really propelled it along.
To name a few: What’s the tie in between the murder of a paperboy and years later a woman in a park? What is the significance of a photograph in the murdered woman’s home? And what does the name on the back mean?
Who is guilty?
Who is innocent?
As the cast of characters, all complex and nicely developed, continue to reveal pieces of the puzzle, these questions and so much more kept me guessing. Wanting to know. Unable to put this one down.
No spoilers here but suffice it to say this was a compelling read right down to the unexpected satisfying ending. This ranks up with my growing list of favorites by this author.
Please click HERE to find The Paper Boy on Amazon.