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Cooper, Brian - The Norfolk Triangle
Hardcover: 256 pages (Nov. 2000) Publisher: Constable & Robinson ISBN: 1841192317

This is the seventh in the series featuring Detective Chief Inspector Tench and his mentor, the now retired Detective Chief Inspector Lubbock. The series is set post Second World War in North Norfolk.

Tench is called out to the derelict church of a dead village when the body of a young girl is found. The girl has been strangled and pinned to the ground with a pitchfork through her throat. On the same day the Reverend from the girl's home village reports an act of vandalism in his church. One of the three panes in his stained glass window, the one that depicts Eve, has been daubed with black paint. Is there a connection? Subsequently, a second body is left at the church of another abandoned village and the pane of Adam is defaced and Tench wonders who will be the third victim. He does know however, where the body will be left, at the third corner of the triangle of disappeared villages.

Meanwhile Lubbock relies on his extensive experience and knowledge of the area and begins to dig around. He tells Tench of a similar murder that occurred twenty years ago, a case that was never closed. Is the same person responsible?

THE NORFOLK TRIANGLE is full of many red herrings and implications of witchcraft as well as a quantity of Norfolk dialect. It is an enjoyable enough read and whodunit but I didn't feel that the time of 1951 was well evoked. I felt it could have been be any time, only the many references to the War indicated it was the 1950s. Apart from the obvious lack of computers the police seemed to manage very well. Reflecting real life I suppose, a number of threads are left unresolved, which as a reader, I felt a bit cheated by.

Karen Meek, England
December 2001

Karen blogs at
Euro Crime.

last updated 23/03/2008 20:42