Vengeance on Tyneside
Agnes Lockwood seems to be a magnet for getting involved in murder cases. When she hears the voices and screams of a young woman behind the trash bins, she rallies to her aid hoping to safe her life. But, something about this young girl is family as she remembers seeing the red dress, noticing her and a young man arguing earlier in the day as she peered through her window in her hotel and using her binoculars could recount the entire incident. The young man seemed violent and upset with this young girl and she managed to get away but what or who was he looking at? When the final scenes are done when the EMT’s arrive who is the man taking pictures and how would his photos set Agnes on a course of action once again to learn his identity, why she thinks she was the target of who he was staring at and how once again her boyfriend DCI Alan Johnson would have to take action to curb her curiosity and lower her danger level or else she might be the next victim of Vengeance on Tyneside.
As the story pushes ahead Agnes becomes involved in wanting to learn more about his mysterious man as we learn that the victim Wendy Hamilton did not survive her injuries and that even her own family was not aware of her actions or what kind of life she lived. When the medical examiner comes out with some startling information about something related to her medical condition, it sets Agnes off on her own path of investigation as DCI Alan Johnson and his Sergeant embark on their own. But, no fingerprints on the weapon, no DNA on her clothes and little else to go on how would they proceed? The key Agnes thought was in the photographs that were taken, and that Alan made sure that she goes a copy of. Just what was she going to do next and why did she think about buying property there and not remaining in her luxury hotel?
At times Agnes has too much time for herself and while having something at a local café, the photographer approaches her, and the encounter is chilling, and she gets the feeling that he’s not done with her yet. Wanting to impress her with his photographs and disappointed that she did not make a fuss over him, who was the woman that was angry at his actions towards Agnes and why did she make it seem that he was flirting with her putting Agnes in the limelight once again? What about the property that she wanted to buy, and would Alan want to live there, or does he prefer the hotel?
Does Agnes ever do anything but on impulse? But there would be two more attacks and one would be fatal as DCI Alan Johnson and his team must do more than sort of the murders and the latest attack on another young girl. But Agnes won’t let things drop and when she sees the sergeant at the Lift and questions why it was not working will she realize that there have been two more murders and want to be part of the investigation?
Lives are at stake and those that worked with the three young women cannot understand the motive behind the stabbings and yet one photographer seems to be at every scene looking to rise above the others and great hype for himself, but why and how does he know about the stabbings before everyone else?
When Agnes sets her mind to something and she decides to inform someone that he’s a prime suspect and escorts him to the police station, she takes a quick trip out of there, leaving this person alone and sets her sites on the hotel supervisor hoping that she will work with her to learn more about the staff and the suspect thinking she can once again solve the murders and the stabbings.
But what will happen if she interferes and goes too far? What about her relationship with Alan? Things get tense and words are spoken as both Agnes and Alan stand firm by their convictions are harsh tones come through both characters and you get the feeling that things might turn in the wrong direction. Alan’s upset that she was with another man having champagne and yet it was nothing to get in a huff about and Agnes did not like the way he spoke to her but that did not stop her from interfering in the case. Larry Parker is the prime suspect in the murders and the stabbing and now there is another death of a man. Just who this man is and how is he linked will shock readers.
Things get even more tense as Agnes has second thoughts about what she learns about Larry Parker, Alan learns some information that might change it all as Parker now has a high- priced solicitor and things could take a downward turn for everyone. Just who stabbed the two women and what does the third one that survived reveal? Things between Agnes and Alan seem to be frayed and Andrews his sergeant is battling his own private wars and demons.
When the pieces fall into place and Agnes questions the staff supervisor and then the manager you begin to realize that someone is hiding something. There is a connection between all three women that were attacked but that is for the police to release and readers to learn when you read this outstanding novel. Once again Agnes proves that her processes of deduction might be more sound than that of the police and putting herself in danger once again will she get saved in time as once again author Eileen Thornton takes us deep inside the mind of a well-organized murderer thinking that nothing will stop what this person wants and the motive for murder well that’s something else you will have to learn from Agnes when she once again solves the case. Tenacious, impetus, hard headed at times and never easy to deal with once she gets a mind on track to solve a murder. Justice will be done at all costs but when will they put her on the force as a consultant after all she is equally as good as Jessica Fletcher, Ms. Marple or even my favorite Hetty Winthrop. Added in what about her relationship with DCI Alan Johnson well when you read the final scene you decide. Once again, my favorite author from Scotland delivers a suspense filled novel with a serious twist, some humor and two well matched characters but which one will get the last word? Watch out when you walk on the quayside because you do not want to be the next victim on Vengeance on TYNESIDE!
Fran Lewis: Just reviews