Lee Wood Kingdom of Lies Review

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Harriet Klausner's review of Lee Wood Kingdom of Lies


“Kingdom of Lies ”

Written on: 03/10/2005 by Harriet Klausner (18637 reviews written)

Kingdom of Lies

Lee Wood

St. Martin's, Dec 2005, $24.95, 336 pp.

ISBN: 0312340303

In Leeds, a teenage jogger finds a drowned naked woman in a pond on the grounds of Harewood House; the current owner is a first cousin to the Queen. Leeds Police Sergeant Keen Dunliffe heads to the scene hoping an accident, not murder, occurred.

American Professor Gillian Waltham calls the police because her roommate at a conference at Leeds University is missing. Dr. Waltham arrives at the Weetwood Police Station and identifies the victim as Dr. Christine Swinton, an eighteenth century English Royalty historian.

Soon afterward Met Chief Superintendent Pete McCraig and Justin Scudder, personal assistant to the Home Secretary, arrive to ask Keen to stay close to Gillian to see if he can learn something about Christine's death. She is the fourth such victim left on a royal estate in the past few months. Though he believes the Met blokes are hiding much of what they know, he agrees to the assignment because he has an opportunity to see his twin sons living with his former wife and her fianc in London. He might have reconsidered taking the job if he knew what awaited him in town.

KINGDOM OF LIES is an interesting police procedural starring a cynical police sergeant and an upbeat professor. The storyline is fun to follow, as the audience along with Keen wonder what the Met is hiding. Though the Keen-Jillie relationship is an overused plot device, their working together makes the tale succeed, and leads to the final odd twist with the "guardian angel". Fans will enjoy this spin that sets up future tales starring the acrimonious cop who is somewhat mellowed by the elan for more in life professor.

Harriet Klausner

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