Under A Silent Moon is the first book in a series written by Elizabeth Haynes. It features Detective Chief Inspector Louisa Smith and her Major Crimes team. I read Elizabeth Haynes' first published book, Into The Darkest Corner, earlier this year and loved it. Apparently, the author started Under A Silent Moon some years ago and then went on to write three other published books.
I enjoyed this book very much, although it did not hit me quite the same as Into The Darkest Corner. I did like the main character, Lou Smith, who is a newly promoted DCI. Lou is finding her way in her new position and the murder investigation she is placed in charge of, the killing of Polly Leuchers, is her first as a DCI. And then a car is discovered at the bottom of a quarry. It contains the body of a woman who was a neighbor of Polly's. It seems like a suicide, but maybe not.
As DCI Smith assembles her team to investigate both of these deaths, she is disconcerted to find that DI Andy Hamilton has been assigned to the case. Andy was a one-night fling that Lou would prefer to forget. Other specialists make up a part of the investigation force, and Elizabeth Haynes does a good job of explaining the behind-the-scenes aspects of a murder unit. This author is an investigative analyst, working with the police, and she brings an authenticity to her story. She also includes an appendix at the end, explaining many of the duties of the often forgotten analysts. Another interesting aspect is the inclusion of police documents, witness statements, phone messages, and charts, interspersed with the narrative.
The mystery itself was filled with twists and turns, although I did suspect the final solution before the ending. And there were a couple of characters that I'd be glad to meet again. I'd also like to know a bit more about Lou's background and what brought her to her current job.
The next book in the series, Behind Closed Doors, will be published at the end of March. The storyline of that book sounds intriguing, and I'll be glad to revisit a crime scene with DCI Louisa Smith and her team.