EVERY SECRET THING by Emma Cole (Allison & Busby), 406 pages, $24.95 paper. Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
Emma Cole's new mystery is so complex, it almost trips over all the threads. But in the end, they tie up in satisfying ways.
T.O. journalist Kate Murray is confronted on the streets while visiting London, England, by Andrew Deacon, who wants to give her a big scoop, something about a murder that took place years ago. But he's run over by a car before he's able to hand over the relevant report.
Using her newspaper instincts and the one big clue Deacon was able to give her - he knew her grandmother - she starts digging to get the story. Back in Toronto, her granny Georgia fills her in just before she's murdered in front of Kate's eyes.
Before she's killed, she discloses that she and Deacon both worked for British intelligence during the Second World War and posed as a married couple. She also drops enough names to help Kate get to work on a mystery involving espionage and counter-espionage.
Of course, other people start dying just as Kate is about to get to them. And someone's following her - and he sure is hunky.
In addition to London and T.O., the story takes Kate to Washington and Lisbon, and all the locations are vividly evoked, especially the tiled streets of Portugal, which are as labyrinthine as the plot.
You do have to take in a lot of detail to follow the story, but Cole has a grasp of the genre and knows how to keep you turning the pages.
A worthy nominee for the Arthur Ellis Award for fiction crime writing.
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