Eleven Days-Stav Sherez
A fire rages through a sleepy West London square, engulfing a small convent hidden away among the residential houses. When DI Jack Carrigan and DS Geneva Miller arrive at the scene they discover eleven bodies, yet there were only supposed to be ten nuns in residence.
It's eleven days before Christmas, and despite their superiors wanting the case solved before the holidays, Carrigan and Miller start to suspect that the nuns were not who they were made out to be. Why did they make no move to escape the fire? Who is the eleventh victim, whose body was found separate to the others? And where is the convent's priest, the one man who can answer their questions?
What a well constructed mystery. There wasn't anything of fluff in this mystery-it was a hard gritty set of too little and then too much information filled with some red herrings so interesting you didn't resent having to read them. The research put into this book paid off. The prose gets a bit heavy, the book overall is quite grim, almost venturing into a modern noir. The descriptions are thorough, sometimes too thorough but nevertheless always clear and concise while not being didactic. My main issue was the ending-something I won't go into here but will leave it as...implausible.
The detectives, Carrigan and Miller, are refreshingly free of romances rendering them an excellent, professional team. This is actually the second book with them and I enjoyed them and Sherez's prose so much I'd happily seek out the first in the series, A Dark Redemption.