Keith Miles is probably best recognised by readers under the pen name of Edward Marston. He writes several well-received historical mysteries spanning the 11th century through to the 19th century. His website is www.edwardmarston.com
The innocuous title of Thomas Perry’s latest book conceals an explosive story. When a high-class hooker is murdered, the police investigation stalls. The parents of the murdered girl hire Jack Till, an ex-cop turned P.I. He manages to link their daughter’s death to a string of other murders of escorts, all of whom look remarkably like the current victim. Identifying a pattern, Till is able to pick up the killer’s trail and even anticipates who his next target may be. His warning is disregarded and the girl ends up dead in exactly the same way as her strawberry-blonde predecessors.
Having set up the hunt, Perry switches to Joey Moreland, the killer, and delves into his background to explain his psychotic behaviour. Moreland is a handsome young man whose seductive charms are a prelude to murder and robbery. He’s an eerily fascinating character and there are times when the author seems more interested in him than in Jack Till, giving the book a slight imbalance. But the pace never slackens.
The Boyfriend has all the hallmarks of Thomas Perry’s work – a driving narrative, crisp dialogue, well-researched technical detail, all-too-believable characters, some terrific scenes and a wonderful fluency. The final confrontation is a trifle perfunctory but it nevertheless leaves the reader with a deep sense of satisfaction. This book is a sure-fire winner from an author of consistently high quality.