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Peter Lovesey

The Last Detective

Peter Lovesey The Last Detective
$7.99 New
 
Low stock - should ship Monday

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Biographical note:

Peter Lovesey is the author of twenty-six highly praised mystery novels and has been awarded the CWA Gold and Silver Daggers and the Diamond Dagger for Lifetime Achievement, as well as many US honors. He lives in West Sussex, England.

Country of final manufacture:

US

Excerpt from book:

ONE

A MAN STOOD THIGH-DEEP IN WATER, motionless,
absorbed, unaware of what was drifting towards him. He was
fishing on the north shore of Chew Valley Lake, a 1200-acre
reservoir at the foot of the Mendip Hills south of Bristol. He
had already taken three brown trout of respectable weight.

He watched keenly for a telltale swirl in the calm lake
where he had cast. The conditions were promising. It was an
evening late in September, the sky was overcast and the flies
in their millions had just whirled above him in their spectacular
sunset flight, soaring and swooping over the lake in a
mass darker and more dense than the clouds, their droning
as resonant as a train in the underground. The day’s hatch,
irresistible to hungry fish.

A light south-westerly fretted the surface around him, yet
ahead there was this bar of water, known to fishermen as the
scum, that showed a different pattern in the fading light.
There, he knew by experience, the fish preferred to rise.

So preoccupied was the man that he failed altogether to
notice a pale object at closer proximity. It drifted languidly
in the current created by the wind, more than half submerged,
with a slight rocking motion that fitfully produced
a semblance of life.

Finally it touched him. A white hand slid against his
thigh. A complete arm angled outwards as the body lodged
against him, trapped at the armpit. It was a dead woman,
face-up and naked.

The fisherman glanced down. From high in his throat
came a childishly shrill, indrawn cry.

For a moment he stood as if petrified. Then he made an
effort to gather himself mentally so as to disentangle himself
from the undesired embrace. Unwilling to touch the
corpse with his hands, he used the handle of the rod as a
lever, lodging the end in the armpit and pushing the body
away from him, turning it at the same time, then stepping
aside to let it move on its way with the current. That accomplished,
he grabbed his net from its anchorage in the mud
and, without even stopping to reel in his line, splashed his
way to the bank. There, he looked about him. No one was
in sight.

This angler was not public-spirited. His response to the
discovery was to bundle his tackle together and move off to
his car as fast as possible.

He did have one judicious thought. Before leaving, he
opened the bag containing his catch and threw the three
trout back into the water.


TWO

A LITTLE AFTER 10.30 THE same Saturday evening,
Police Constable Harry Sedgemoor and his wife Shirley
were watching a horror video in their terraced cottage in
Bishop Sutton, on the eastern side of the lake. PC Sedgemoor
had come off duty at six. His long body was stretched
along the length of the sofa, his bare feet projecting over
one end. On this hot night he had changed into a black
singlet and shorts. A can of Malthouse Bitter was in his left
hand, while his right was stroking Shirley’s head, idly teasing
out the black curls and feeling them spring back into
shape. Shirley, after her shower dressed only in her white
cotton nightie, reclined on the floor, propped against the
sofa. She had her eyes closed. She had lost interest in the
film, but she didn’t object to Harry watching if it resulted
afterwards in his snuggling up close to her in bed, as he
usually did after watching a horror film. Secretly, she suspected
he was more scared by them than she, but you didn’t
suggest that sort of thi
Praise for The Last Detective


“The first volume in Lovesey’s beloved Peter Diamond series has a handsome new 20th-anniversary edition”
Entertainment Weekly

"A bravura performance ... slyly paced, marbled with surprise and in the end, strangely affecting."
The New York Times Book Review

"Thickly textured, amusing, unpredictably mixing puzzle and procedural ... one of the best."
Los Angeles Times

"A treasure."
Chicago Sun-Times

"Not only a good story but a compelling one."
Boston Globe

"Top-form Lovesey."
Kirkus Reviews

"Witty ... One surprise after another."
—Publishers Weekly


Praise for The Peter Diamond series

“I’m jealous of everyone discovering Lovesey and Diamond for the first time—you have a wonderful backlist to catch up on. Me, all I can do is wait for the next book.”
Sara Paretsky

"These erudite and wondrously witty books are unlike any police procedural you've ever read."
The New York Times Book Review
 
“Thickly textured, amusing, unpredictably mixing puzzle and procedural.... One of the best.”
Los Angeles Times
 
“Witty…. A perfectly realized murder mystery.”
Wall Street Journal
 
“Extremely stylish, lighter than air ... utterly surprising.”
Newsweek
 
“Lovesey’s books are so beautifully constructed and cleanly written that they could be used as textbooks in a crime writing course.”
Chicago Tribune


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