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This is a very intricate plot with many strands which makes for a very intriguing read.  There are twists and turns all the way through which had me turning page after page.

canal boat cover final.jpgMURDER ON THE OXFORD CANAL is the first in a series of page-turning crime thrillers set in Oxfordshire.

Perfect for fans of Agatha Christie, Colin Dexter, or Ruth Rendell.

The Oxford Canal meanders through the beautiful county of Oxfordshire, sometimes joining up with the rivers Cherwell and Thames, and flows past the world-famous university city of Oxford. Unlike many canals which are practically ruler-straight commercial waterways, built to help transport goods and heavy traffic before the advent of the railways, the Oxford Canal is a more winding and natural-looking body of water, and is a haven for wildlife and wildflowers. It has several romantically-named locks on its length (such as the Three Pigeons Lock, and Dashwood Lock) and boasts the ominously-sounding Somerton Deep Lock, which often terrifies first-time boating holiday-makers.


DI Hillary Greene
An attractive woman in her forties, Hillary Greene is a police officer of many years’ experience, and came up through the ranks. Consequently, she knows how the system works, and is fiercely loyal to the force without being blinkered to its faults. She is a long-standing friend of her immediate superior officer, ‘Mellow’ Mallow and enjoys a rather enigmatic relationship with the steely Superintendent Marcus Donleavy. Popular with the rank and file for her no-nonsense attitude and competence, she is currently under investigation, on account of her recently deceased, and definitely corrupt husband (Ronnie Greene). But adversity has never stopped her from doing her job.

DCI Philip ‘Mellow’ Mallow
Mel appreciates Hillary’s first-rate ability to solve her cases, and isn’t happy about her harassment by the officers from York. Known for his sartorial elegance and laid-back manners, he has a sharp mind, and an eye for the ladies. A good friend and ally for Hillary in her recent tribulations, he’s determined to keep his best investigator focused on the problems at hand.

My Review

This is book 1 in the DI Hillary Greene series which is being republished by Joffe Books.

DI Hillary Greene is reeling from the repercussions of the death of her estranged husband who was a bent policeman. She is under investigation by the Internal Investigators who believe she knows the whereabouts of the proceeds of Ronnie’s crimes. Frank Ross was a friend of Ronnie’s and uses every opportunity to get one over on Hillary. She is unhappy, living on a boat and struggling to hold on to the only thing she has left: her career.

This is a very intricate plot with many strands which makes for a very intriguing read. Hillary is dragged out of bed to investigate what is thought to be an accidental drowning. It was supposed to be an open and shut case to save the higher ranked investigators getting out of bed. It turns out to be anything but and Hillary is fighting to keep hold of the case but having leads stolen at every turn. Vice become involved and the Internal Investigators are waiting in the background. Everyone is waiting for Hillary to mess up.

This is not a fast paced ‘thriller’ but it is possibly one of the most intriguing books I have read. There are twists and turns all the way through which had me turning page after page. The characters develop well through the course of the book into well rounded characters. Some I like and others I don’t but they all work perfectly. This is a very promising introduction to what appears to be a brilliant series.

The book ends with a question to find the answer I am off to read Book 2.

Thank you to Joffe Books and Faith for the advance copy.

Author photo

Author Bio

Faith Martin has been writing for over 25 years, in four genres and under four different pen names. She was born in Oxford and sets most of her crime novels within sight of the city of dreaming spires. A real nature lover and afficionado of the countryside, descriptions of wildlife and native flora often find their way into her manuscripts. Right now, JOFFE BOOKS are re-issuing the first eleven of the DI Hillary Greene novels in new updated editions! And the first of these, MURDER ON THE OXFORD CANAL is available now, with the others to very quickly follow.

Her romance novels, written under the name of Maxine Barry, are now available from Corazon Books. IMPOSTERS In PARADISE, and HEART OF FIRE are both out, and others will very quickly become available in the future.

Her first foray into writing ‘spooky’ crime, (and written under the pen name of Jessie Daniels) comes out in November 2017. THE LAVENDER LADY CASEFILE is published by Robert Hale, an imprint of Crowood Press.

As Joyce Cato, she writes more classically-inspired ‘proper’ whodunits. So if you like an amateur sleuth, plenty of clues and red herrings, plus a baffling murder mystery to solve, these are the books for you.

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