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Sunday, 7 April 2013

Peter James - Not Dead Yet

Book review by Brian Lowen read out live on bookshow  Thursday 3rd April
This is the eighth book in the series featuring Detective Roy Grace of the Brighton Police Force and is another suspense filled thriller that is difficult to put down.

The story this time has Roy Grace being put in charge of security for the visit of a famous rock star, Gala Lafayette, who is starring in a film being made in the Brighton Pavilion about King George IVth and his mistress, Mrs. Fitzgerald, for whom he had the Brighton Pavilion built as a place where they could be together away from the London court scene.

There are three people intent on killing Gala: one is Anna, her number one fan who has spent £250,000 on tatty memorabilia of Gala but is ignored by her when Anna tries to meet her at the Grand Hotel.  The second person is a fat American who has followed her all the way from her home in Los Angeles.  He thinks his girlfriend should have got the part of Mrs. Fitzgerald in the film and he warned Gala not to take it but this was ignored by her security team.  The last person is Amos Smallbone, a convicted felon who Roy put away for twelve years, now out of prison and seeking revenge.  He knows how much it would harm Roy’s career if anything happened to Gala while she is in Brighton under his care. 
There are other sub plots interwoven in the story: Roy’s deputy, Glen Branson’s search for love following the breakup of his

marriage and the trapping of a nasty little reporter from the local paper who always seems to have inside information as to what is going on during the investigation.
Peter James tells the story so well with some chapters finishing in suspense only for a different scenario to be picked up by the start of the next chapter.  The book often refers back to episodes in previous books so you do feel more involved in the story if you have read the previous books in this series.

Also we have the ongoing saga of the strange sudden and unexpected disappearance ten years ago of Roy Grace’s wife Sandy.  Each book features a short mention of her.  She is still alive but no reason is given for her disappearance until now when all is finally explained at last, but they still don’t meet.

Roy meanwhile has found a new love – Clio, the beautiful mortician who is now pregnant with their baby.  As usual we have a dramatic ending with Roy rescuing Gala from a horrible death.

Peter James continues to write excellent stories with fascinating new plots.  Thoroughly recommended if you like a good thriller.

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