A creditably competent police procedural, this Britcrime investigation brings little new to the party but it racks up all the regular features. These include a dissolute detective inspector, wallowing in a midlife crisis, estranged from his wife and child, bouncing between booze and fags and anti-depressants. Dedicated to the job, he’s propped up by an earnest, capable DS, and what follows in an enjoyably intriguing investigation into a dead body abandoned outside a charity shop.
Micah Seven Five leans much more towards Morse or Midsommer than towards the bleak, melancholy of Nordic noir or the urban grit of The Sweeney. There’s considerable detail, following the police investigation while intimately reporting everyday reality; locations, clothing and characters, the experience of a curry night with an old mate (even down to the crunch of the poppadoms and the stains on the table cloths), and the awkward, frequently fractious confrontations between the estranged couple. The plot plays second fiddle to these detailed scenes – and indeed, once most of the characters are introduced and the body identified it’s not too tricky to work out what might have been happening.
At the end, it’s satisfying to be proved right about the identity of the murderer. And also to be surprised by the final page, which contained one very unexpected twist.
Reviewed by Rowena Hoseason
Micah Seven Five is available as an ebook or paperback