The Rising Tide (Vera Stanhope #10) by Ann Cleeves
This is the tenth Vera Stanhope book and does not disappoint. The discovery of a man’s hanged body on Holy Island takes Vera and her team back fifty years and another death on Holy Island.
The Rising Tide may well be a murder mystery, but Cleeves elevates it well above a mere investigation into an untimely death. The suspects are all ‘of an age’ just as Vera is, and ‘she supposed that older people made fewer plans. They had less time to fill, no endless possibilities stretching into the future.’ She is also painfully aware that the past can still influence the present as she is haunted by her dead father Hector who ‘was always there, bullying her from the grave’.
Vera’s relationships with her team are complex: Joe, ‘her boy. Her favourite.’; and Holly, whose job is her life and who craves Vera’s attention and can see that Joe is her favourite. However, that doesn’t stop Vera from always getting her own way, even if it makes Joe grumpy because ‘she was the boss, and, really, she didn’t care’.
The Rising Tide is a classic murder mystery taking place in an isolated location, in this case Holy Island where the rising waters of the causeway make it inaccessible at times. Northumberland locations are an integral part of the Vera series, and this particular setting is suitably atmospheric. This is yet another cracking great book from the delightful Ann Cleeves. Highly recommended.