Six Wicked Reasons by Jo Spain

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Six Wicked Reasons by Jo Spain

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A standalone from a top-class crime writer. Highly recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 432 Date: January 2020
Publisher: Quercus
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1529400274

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It was early summer 2018 and Adam Latimer returned home to Spanish Cove after an absence of ten years. The family had thought him dead - in fact, that's what the private detective his mother had insisted upon had told them. He was cagey about exactly where he'd been but he seemed content, if not happy, to be hope. What brought him? Well, nine years ago his mother died and he'd seen the in memoriam in the paper: this was the first he'd heard about what had happened. His three sisters and two brothers had mixed feelings about his return, but his father is delighted. In fact, he's determined to have a party. Only, with Frazer Latimer, what happens has to be about him. He has an announcement to make - it's nine years since Kathleen died and he's been lonely. He's met Ana, a Polish immigrant, and they're getting married.

The party is being held on a yacht that belongs to Danny McHugh, Frazer's long-term friend, and godfather to two of the children. Nine people set out on the yacht, but only eight return alive: Frazer suffers a head injury and ends up in the sea. He was probably dead before he hit the water and Detective Downs cannot believe that it was an accident. Which of the eight people on board killed him?

James is a television producer, but work has dried up and he's desperately short of money. He's got to maintain his wife, Sandra and her daughter Bella as well as his mistress, Lena. How did Frazer react to his request for an 'investment' in his company? Clio has been an illegal immigrant in New York for four years: Frazer refuses to release her trust fund, which she was entitled to on her twenty-first birthday. Kate is married to wealthy businessman and hotel owner Cheng Grant. Ellen is thirty-nine but still living at home: something happened thirteen years ago and although she's reluctant to talk about it, it's clear that she blames her father. Perhaps the saddest of the family is Ryan, who's been living in Limone in Italy and feeding his addictive personality. Frazer refused to release his trust fund too.

I first encountered Jo Spain a few months ago when I read The Boy Who Fell and I knew then that I would take any opportunity to read more of her work. She's a classy writer: no clever literary tricks, just a good story exquisitely plotted and well told. I half guessed whodunnit, but I was nowhere near the full answer and what little bit I did get didn't spoil my enjoyment of the book. Now I've just got to get my hands on some more of her books! This one is highly recommended and I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

For more classy crime try When the Dead Come Calling (Burrowhead Mysteries 1) by Helen Sedgwick.

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