A police procedural novel set in urban Cumbria

Little Doubt by Kelly Porter is a police procedural set in Cumbria. This book, however, is not set in the astounding beauty of the Lake District but in the more urban area of Penrith and especially its council estates. It’s the seventh book in a series and I haven’t read any of the others so I was missing some background about the police team and the home life of DI Kelly Porter although I don’t think that this seriously affected my enjoyment of the story.

There are two murders of young women by stabbing in the town. In one the victim is a middle class housewife jogging and in the other the murdered woman is poor and from a council flat. The police investigation concentrates on the jogger and DI Porter is under a lot of pressure to find the killer and to ignore the death of the poorer woman. The disparity in the victims and the suspected lack of interest in the poorer woman causes civil unrest. The family of the jogger find themselves caught up in the protests and angry about the devastation in their lives. DI Porter comes to suspect that the pressure being put upon her investigation comes from internal corruption within the police service and then she becomes aware that she cannot trust all of those working closely with her.

This is a well written and plotted book and the story takes some interesting turns although it doesn’t have any great twists. It is enhanced by seeing the story from a couple of different viewpoints which means that the reader sometimes knows things that the police don’t. I have to say that it’s not so captivating that I would immediately go out and buy others by the same author but I would read them if I saw them. It’s a crowded field and this book doesn’t stand out particularly but it was enjoyable enough.

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