Can Sal break the conspiracy of silence that surrounds her latest case?
Sal Kilkenny is asked to discover the whereabouts of Jennifer Pickering, disinherited twenty years ago. But it seems that now Jennifer does not want to be found. And as she spends her days tracing Jennifer, Sal's nights are shattered by a dangerous stint with the Neighbour Nuisance Unit on one of Manchester's toughest housing estates. In this highly charged atmosphere it's not surprising when tempers flare... and as properties start to burn, Sal's two cases spiral out of control and events, past and present, collide with deadly intensity.
Sal Kilkenny Series
Looking For Trouble (Book 1)
Go Not Gently (Book 2)
Dead Wrong (Book 3)
Stone Cold Red Hot (Book 4)
Towers of Silence (Book 5)
Bitter Blue (Book 6)
Missing (Book 7)
Crying Out Loud (Book 8)
Praise for Cath Staincliffe:
'Gritty, intelligent, humane and involving' Big Issue
'Deftly organised, with several surprising twists.' Evening Standard
'An engrossing read.' Sunday Telegraph
'Real people, real problems... Staincliffe writes brilliantly and compassionately about things that matter. Seriously good.' Literary Review
'Modest, compassionate... a solid ingenious plotter with a sharp eye for domestic detail' Literary Review
'Complex and satisfying' The Sunday Times
'about as good as the British private eye novel gets' Time Out
The "stone cold" in the title of British author Staincliffe's (Looking for Trouble) excellent fifth Sal Kilkenny PI mystery refers to the traces of a young woman, Jennifer Pickering, who went missing 20 years before. For some initially undisclosed reason, her parents deemed her a disgrace. Her mother refuses to have her name mentioned even now. But younger brother Roger, who loved her as a boy, hires Sal to determine what became of her. Jennifer disappeared without saying goodbye to anyone, and has not contacted any of her friends since. "Red hot" refers to Sal's second problem: a Muslim family from Somalia that is the target of neo-Nazi youths determined to drive them from their home. The Neighborhood Nuisance Unit hires Sal to observe the situation with a camcorder from a neighbor's house to get evidence against the thugs. It is immediately obvious that the local police are indifferent to the increasingly dangerous plight of the family. The two cases unexpectedly come together in a whirlwind denouement. Sal, an intelligent, workmanlike sleuth, tends to discern the facts rather than jump to conclusions. Staincliffe's depiction of Sal's domestic life is exceptionally good: she and her little girl live with her partner, Ray, who is also a single parent with a little boy. Another principal character is the city of Manchester, England, of which both author and detective are fond. This fine piece of craftsmanship is a very pleasant, well-paced read. FYI: Looking for Trouble was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasy Award.