Cooper, Natasha - 'A Greater Evil'
The eighth Trish Maguire book sees Trish dealing with a very tricky insurance claim relating to a new London office building in which cracks have appeared in the structure. The insurance company she is working for has a loss adjuster Cecilia Mayford, who is due to take pregnancy leave. Cecilia is married to Sam Foundling a renown sculptor who by a strange coincidence was represented by Trish seventeen years ago, when the then twelve year old Sam had been physically abused by his foster parents. Cecilia also complains about various coincidences which alarm her, and this is a theme of the book.
Sam has been contacted by someone who claims to be his mother and wants Trish to meet her for him. A brutal attack on Cecilia, who mysteriously has gone to Sam's studio, leaves her dying and to be found by Sam. Before she dies however the baby is born and goes on a life support machine.
Who has killed her and why? Trish's friend Chief Inspector Caro Lyalt suspects Sam who is known to have a violent temper. Cecilia's mother Gina, a high court judge, is also doubtful of Sam.
Trish tries to resolve her claim as well as trying to believe in Sam and attempting to prove his innocence despite the evidence, strong feelings against him and Sam's fragile personality.
Natasha Cooper clearly enjoys writing this series and has an engaging heroine in Trish. The author admits that she is interested in why people do the things that they do. A study of boys with a monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) deficiency and how they react to treatment, coupled with a personal trauma of house subsidence form the background to the book.
As usual a well plotted novel, a very enjoyable page-turner which keeps your interest throughout.
Read another review of A GREATER EVIL.
Geoff Jones, England