SLIM CHANCE (PI-Bath, England-Cont) – G Helton,
Peter – 2nd in series
Constable, 2006 – Hardcover

Someone is kidnapping overweight women in Bath and starving them to death. The police have dubbed the kidnapper “Dr. Adkins.” Painter and private investigator Chris Honeysett accidentally stumbles across the second victim, who is still alive. For revenge, the kidnapper has taken a friend of Peter’s and it’s up to Peter to follow the clues and find his friend before she, too, is dead.

How wonderful to find a book set in a location new to me; and one with such a long and interesting history. But that’s probably the think I liked best about the book. As an investigator, Honeysett is a bit of a klutz and wouldn’t get far without his friends. I also have, what is coming to be, my usual complaint about an author assuming the reader has read the first book and the lack of character development. I’m beginning every author should be required to read Ed McBain who, in less than 200 pages, could construct a tight multi-threaded plot, create a strong sense of place and make you know each of the characters in the process. I’m not saying this is a bad book--it did keep me turning the pages and wanting to find out how it ended—but I keep waiting for books to be great rather than just good. However, if you are intrigued by the setting of Bath, it’s worth checking out of the library.

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