It’s a Mystery: No Mark Upon Her, by Deborah Crombie

No Mark Upon Her (Kincaid/James, #14)
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A K-9 Search and Rescue team is called in when Olympic rowing hopeful Rebecca Meredith fails to return from a training run at Henley, home of the world’s most famous regatta. When her body is located, Scotland Yard Superintendent Duncan Kinkaid is immediately called in to manage the case, for Meredith was also a high level Metropolitan policewoman. The world of regattas and sculls is not all tea and crumpets, as Kinkaid quickly learns. Soon he is forced to make some choices that could very well destroy his own career.

Deborah Crombie’s 14th Kinkaid novel is expertly plotted, but it’s no thriller. It is, however, a meticulous police procedural, in which multiple leads must be carefully teased apart, and the conclusion is anything but foregone. The book is filled, as usual, with well drawn characters, some of whom virtually spring from the pages. Crombie tempers the investigative complexities with scenes involving Kinkaid’s personal life. He and longtime partner Gemma James have recently married, and with two sons and an adopted daughter, the conflicting demands of newly blended family and two rewarding careers are daunting.

No Mark Upon Her is a worthwhile addition to the Kinkaid saga, but while it is interesting and beautifully complex, it is also lacking in the suspense the characterizes many of the earlier entries.


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