Kelly, Jim - 'Nightrise'
The author published five previous books in the Philip Dryden series before writing a new series featuring Detective Inspector Peter Shaw. There has been four books so far in the new series. I had presumed Mr Kelly had run out of ideas for Philip Dryden but not so as this is number six.
This is very much about Philip Dryden however. He now has a family who need his support and has had to leave his beloved houseboat. His eccentric friend Humph still drives Philip around in his taxi; Humph still lives in the taxi with his dog, learning obscure languages and drinking his miniature bottles of spirits! Philip is still the crime reporter for the local newspaper The Crow, however he has applied for the post of editor as the current one is about to retire.
A police contact tells Dryden that a man claiming to be Jack Dryden has been killed in a road traffic accident. This man has a birth certificate and passport claiming to be Phillip's father. How can this be when Jack Dryden vanished in the floods of 1977 presumed drowned? Philip's mother has recently died so he must try to seek answers from her brother and his wife. Before he can investigate he is contacted by a couple whose baby has died and they cannot claim the body as the Council have a problem. The couple have other problems as he is an illegal immigrant having fled from Niger. Mrs Yoruba is a white local woman. Dryden is alerted to some activity out at Adventures Fen near Ely. Investigating he finds the police, some migrant workers and a dead man hanging from a water gantry. His body is badly damaged by gunshot wounds.
There is also a local protest movement against the re-flooding of one the Fens, which will submerge some houses including a local manor house. Dryden will be busy trying to unravel the various mysteries including why there is an Estonian Police chief working with local police. But it is the body of the man claiming to be his father that will cause him most concern.This is a welcome return for an old favourite character. There is some interesting research about the Fens and I would highly recommend this book.
Geoff Jones, England