Morning Frost by James Henry

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Morning Frost by James Henry

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A good read as Frost buries his wife - and others get more from the wake than he does. Henry has made a good job of taking on Frost's character and this is a series with real promise.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: November 2013
Publisher: Bantam
ISBN: 978-0593071007

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In 1982 DS Jack Frost - not yet forty years old - is burying his wife, Mary. There's a good turnout for the funeral from the police force and the local Masons, which might be the reason why the local ne'er-do-wells seem to be rather more active than usual. Superintendent Mullett makes a day (and rather a lot of the night) of it, whilst Jack finds himself back at the police station and taking a call about a foot found in a field. (We're looking for someone with a very bad limp...) Add in a rape at the local comprehensive school (hot on the heels of one near a pub) and a new computer system which seems designed to confuse and it's obvious that Jack isn't going to get much chance to grieve for his wife - not that she was at the top of his list of priorities before she died.

This is the third prequel to the DI Jack Frost series written by the late R D Wingfield. I joined the party with the second book and despite an initial reservation about an author taking over a character from another I concluded that it was best to forget that it was a prequel and simply enjoy a good police procedural. With that book I was constantly comparing the writing to the works of R D Wingfield - this time I'd forgotten about the original books and more inclined to remember the television series and to wonder who could play the younger Frost. Henry has come into his own and I'm genuinely excited about where he's taking the series.

It's a convoluted plot which on occasions I found myself relaxing into rather than necessarily following completely. Crimes come thick and fast - and occasionally quite outrageously - but not to the point where you have to suspend disbelief. The eighties are subtly done - and it isn't just the references to Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher, but telephone boxes being staked out - and video cassette recorders being at the sharp end of the technological revolution.

The book does end on something of a cliffhanger - which I would normally dislike, particularly as it's a thread which has been there just about throughout the book. I was a little more forgiving than I would usually be - and just a bit cross that I would probably have to wait a year to find out what happens next.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

The book reads reasonably well as a standalone although there is some benefit to reading in chronological order, much as with another series from the eighties - have a look at A Necessary End by Peter Robinson. For another police procedural which looks back at events of thirty years ago, you might enjoy Saints of the Shadow Bible by Ian Rankin.

Buy Morning Frost by James Henry at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Morning Frost by James Henry at

Buy Morning Frost by James Henry at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Morning Frost by James Henry at


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