For me, Peter Robinson is one of those authors that can't write a bad book. I've enjoyed the few stand alones that he's written, but the Inspector Banks series is my favourite. Abattoir Blues is the newly released 22nd entry.
The new Commissioner has made rural crime a priority, so Banks's team is investigating, although the crimes seem a bit pedestrian for them - a stolen tractor and a break in at a seemingly abandoned airplane hangar. But when human blood stains are found on the hangar floor, the case takes a more serious turn. And when ties between the stolen tractor and the hangar are found......
Although Banks is on the case, he takes a bit of a backseat in this outing, with team member DS Winsome Jackman taking the lead. Winsome is a character I've always enjoyed and it was great to have her take a bigger investigative role, as well as getting to know her a bit better personally. DS Annie Cabbot also has a louder voice in this book. I'm very glad she's still around, even though the relationship between her and Banks has ended. I enjoy her prickly observations of life.
We still get a look at Banks's personal life - I have to say that I don't see his latest relationship lasting. He seems to be pondering his future in this book - wondering what it holds for him. I always enjoy Banks's musical choices and have often gone and looked them up to listen myself.
This is what I enjoy so much about Robinson's books - the characters change and develop with every book. I've feel I've come to know them and sitting down with the latest is like catching up with old friends.
Old friends with some rather disturbing stories. In addition to the great personal development of his characters, Robinson always crafts a great mystery. I wondered how these two diverse cases were going to be woven together. Gentle readers may be disturbed by the descriptions of what happens in an abattoir (slaughterhouse). But it provided a suitably gruesome setting for this latest crime outing.
Abattoir Blues was another great read for me - can't wait for the next in the series! Read an excerpt of Abattoir Blues. You can find Peter Robinson on Facebook.