As this is number 23 in the series, it shows that I have made an effort to read my way through this series. I think I have about 3 or 4 books left to go. I really enjoy this series. A lot of the books are stellar, especially later in the series. This one, though good, didn't grab me as much as a lot of others have. In it we see Banks with his new title - Detective Superintendent. His first duty as a DS is to investigate what is known as an historical sexual assault case. Someone has come forward accusing an aging popular singer and entertainer of rape which happened when the woman was 14 years of age. It's fifty years later, and she has decided to come forward with this accusation that she has buried deep inside her for decades. At the same time, DI Annie Cabbot is investigating the rape and murder of a fifteen year old girl. The girl has been found lying in a roadside ditch naked and beaten to death. Both cases are not connected other than being similar crimes committed fifty years apart. Really not much has changed in all that time both Annie and Banks determine. Banks' investigation runs into many roadblocks as all of the evidence from the decades old rape has been expunged or it has simply disappeared. Police corruption is the culprit in this one, and most of the key police officers have died by the time Banks gets onto their crimes. But the complainant and the accused are still both very much alive, and Banks and Winsome Jackson troll through historical records and old witnesses that have come forward in order to build their case. In Annie's case, the crime they're investigating, though much more recent, could start a racial altercation in one of Eastvale's notorious tenements. Both Annie and Banks are walking political minefields that could end up derailing their careers. Where this book fell down for me a bit was that I figured out the perpetrator in Annie's case early on, and Banks' case really could have only ended in only one way, and that is how it did indeed end. Except, Banks' case didn't really have a satisfactory ending, and a lot was left up in the air. Regardless, I am looking forward to reading the next in this series. I love Alan Banks and his entire crime-fighting crew.
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