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Review: A Killing Kindness by Reginald Hill 
2nd-Jan-2011 12:05 am
talent, pencil
A Killing Kindness: Featuring Dalziel and PascoeA Killing Kindness: Featuring Dalziel and Pascoe by Reginald Hill

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is quite possibly the best of the Dalziel and Pascoe novels that I've read so far. It's a very well paced police procedural with enough twists and turns to keep you hooked until the very end. If you haven't tried this series before, this book would be a good place to start; it's an excellent example of most of the things the series does right.

One thing that particularly impressed me about this book is how it deals with a lot of difficult subject matter. There is a serial killer who is murdering young women; there is a nearby encampment of Romany, some of whom fall under suspicion for the crime; there's the return of the radical feminist group we first met in A Pinch of Snuff; and there are some moments when the police resort to some decidedly dodgy tactics to get their evidence. The opportunities for the author to do something cringeworthy in relation to ethnicity or gender are numerous, as are the moments where I might expect another author to deliver a crude political rant. Hill evades these pitfalls. His characters, although they can be pretty extreme, never seem like stereotypes to me. The world Hill depicts can be pretty ugly, but you never feel like he's stacking the deck to make a point.

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