HID­DEN KILLERS O

Crime Scene - - POST MORTEM - BY LYNDA LA PLANTE By BARR Y FOR­SHAW

n London Fields, a pros­ti­tute in a cheap blue rab­bit-fur coat is strug­gling with an as­sailant who holds a knife to her throat. But this wo­man isn’t who she seems – in fact, she’s a young Jane Ten­ni­son on an un­der­cover as­sign­ment. Soon af­ter­wards, a wo­man is dis­cov­ered dead in a bath, with her child left cry­ing in the next room. Was it ac­ci­den­tal death or mur­der? That ques­tion soon en­gages Ten­ni­son, who al­ready has her hands full with a mul­ti­ple rape case. The pat­tern of her fu­ture ca­reer is soon clear: tak­ing on the CID and putting her­self in dan­ger. This fol­low-up to La Plante’s suc­cess­ful, 1973-set Ten­ni­son, which de­picted her long­time hero­ine not as the tough, ma­ture cop­per we know from the He­len Mir­ren­star­ring TV in­car­na­tion but as an in­ex­pe­ri­enced Met pro­ba­tioner, this sec­ond pre­quel bris­tles with the same vivid de­tail of London dur­ing that dingy decade, and again fore­shad­ows the wo­man she was to be­come.

The rites of pas­sage de­picted in the pre­vi­ous novel aren’t over, and read­ers will be grate­ful for an­other chance to ex­pe­ri­ence Ten­ni­son as a vul­ner­a­ble hero­ine who’s slowly ac­quir­ing her grimly re­silient char­ac­ter.

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