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Watching the Dark: An Inspector Banks Novel    by Peter Robinson order for
Watching the Dark
by Peter Robinson
Order:  USA  Can
McClelland & Stewart, 2012 (2012)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

DCI Alan Banks returns in Peter Robinson's Watching the Dark (the twentieth in the series following Bad Boy), to investigate the murder of a colleague in the grounds of the St Peter's Police Treatment Centre. Detective Inspector Bill Quinn was shot with a crossbow!

When Banks finds compromising photographs (of Quinn in bed with an attractive, naked young woman) in the dead officer's room, his investigation is complicated by the participation of Inspector Joanna Passero of Professional Standards, something he deeply resents on the dead man's behalf. Then he finds links to a cold case, the disappearance of nineteen-year-old Rachel Hewitt in Estonia six years before. Bill Quinn had followed up on the case in Estonia.

While this develops, DI Annie Cabbot returns after the very serious injury she sustained in Bad Boy. The case leads to a migrant labour camp, people-trafficking and loan-sharking, and another murder, preceded by torture. The renewed Rachel Hewitt investigation eventually takes Banks and the lovely Joanna Passero to Estonia, where the authorities discourage them from 'chasing ghosts', while Annie and smart Winsome Jackman pursue the Quinn case in the U.K..

When Krystyna, a half starved young woman who fled the migrant labour camp, surfaces, Annie takes her home with her, but then the girl disappears and Annie worries for her safety. Of course, she and Banks tie it all together, solving both the cold case and the newer ones. As always, Peter Robinson gives us a strong police procedural with appealing leads and thought provoking themes in Watching the Dark; don't miss it.

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