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With A Fall from Grace, Robert Barnard triumphs once again with a witty tale of family discord and murder.
Detective Inspector Charlie Peace and his wife, Felicity, are shocked when Felicity's difficult dad, Rupert Coggenhoe, suddenly announces that he's moving north to their Yorkshire village. Felicity has never much liked her father, and to have him as a near-neighbor fills her with foreboding. The boorish old man has always loved to impress the ladies, young and old, by exaggerating his modest success as a novelist. True to form, soon after his move to Slepton Edge he surrounds himself with adoring females, including a precocious, theatrical teenager named Anne Michaels. Rupert and Anne could make a lethal combination.
Rumors fly, but Felicity convinces herself that Rupert would do nothing seriously wrong. He can be annoying and outrageous but he's not a criminal. She relies on a friend, a doctor who seems to be strangely aware of everything that's happening in the community, to warn her if he hears of anything really troubling. She doesn't have long to wait, but the news is not what she expects. It's worse. A body has been found and it looks like murder. Stunned by a difficult reality, Felicity is even more shocked to discover that she, herself, may be a suspect.
This is one criminal investigation that's much too close to home for Charlie Peace. He's not officially on the case, but he uses his copper's instincts and a husband's heart to find a killer and to discover anew the meaning of family.
Praised for his "perfect pitch, exquisite pacing, and meticulous plotting" (Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times), Robert Barnard proves yet again that he is one of the great masters of mystery.