Notting Hill's private gardens are a sanctuary for those that live surrounding them, until one night the body of a local young woman is found dead in them. The girl is identified as Reagan Keating, nanny to a male young upcoming dancer. Detective Gemma Jones is included on the case as she is a friend of a friend of the victim's employer and knows some of the parties involved. Her and DI Kerry Boatman start to investigate.
Gemma is super busy at work but has problems at home too. Her husband Kincaid (also a cop) gets a call that his father is in the hospital so he races out of town to make sure he is ok. His father ends up being fine, but on his way home he stops to investigate the suicide of a friend and undercover cop whom he cannot believe actually killed himself.
This is book 17 in the well-established Kincaid/Jones series. Since I had never read any of the previous novels, I feel like I missed a lot of who the characters were and all the previous cases and issues they had been through. Very little was mentioned to help a new reader pick this series up at this book and make sense of it. For example, Kincaid is investigating the undercover cop's death, there has obviously been history between those two from previous books and a reason for Kincaid to believe he hadn't killed himself. Having no awareness of that history, I couldn't connect to this story line as I knew nothing about the undercover cop or why Kincaid would think this way.
The other confusing part for a new-to-series reader is the number of characters in this book. It took me 50 pages to realize that Kincaid and Duncan were the same people. The author mentions everyone by their first name with the exception of Kincaid who is mentioned by his last name. I'm not sure why there is this discrepancy but it was confusing for me.
For the mystery that was self-contained within this novel, I enjoyed it. The murderer wasn't too obvious and the story of snobby neighbours was believable.
Definitely start from the first book in this series. If you're already invested, you should enjoy this book!
You can purchase this book at Harper Collins. Thank you to TLC Book Tours for letting me be a part of this tour.
First Line: "She stood at the bus stop, shuffling her feet."
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