Title: The Benefit of Hindsight
Author: Susan Hill
Series: Simon Serrailer #10
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
In this, the tenth Simon Serrailler crime novel, Simon must engage with his own demons as Lafferton struggles to cope with a series of crimes that threaten the sanctity of hearth and home.
On the face of it DC Simon Serrailler has had time to recuperate after the violent incident that cost him his arm, and nearly his life. He is back in harness at Lafferton CID, but is spending his spare time high up in the cathedral roof, making drawings of some medieval angels which are being restored.
Lafferton is going through a quiet patch, so far as crime is concerned, until one rainy night two local men open their front door to a couple seeking shelter. A serious error of judgment in the investigation puts Simon’s reputation on the line and calls into question how full his recovery has really been.
In her new role as a private GP, Simon’s sister Cat’s medical and counselling skills are tested by terrible and unexpected events at the homes of two very different Lafferton women. Simon and Cat’s unreliable father, Richard, has returned to live nearby, in a luxury apartment for the well-heeled over 60s. He’s soon up to his usual tricks.
In this, the tenth Simon Serrailler crime novel, Simon must battle his own demons as Lafferton struggles to cope with a series of crimes that threaten the very sanctity of hearth and home.
Another absorbing, excellently written crime novel in the Simon Serrailer series. As always, the characters are brilliantly well developed and, although not always completely likable – there are definitely elements to both Simon and Cat’s personalities that grate on me at times – they are convincing, and returning to read more about them is like returning to a comforting, old friend.
The plot is complex and intriguing; there are various elements that seem as if they might be unrelated but come together as the novel continues, and some that I thought really would be related to the crime one way or another, and actually weren’t. The story doesn’t just focus on the crime elements but also on family developments and character building in general, and the fact that both Cat and Simon are so involved in the local area means as the reader you continue to get a real sense of the Lafferton community.
I really enjoyed this novel, and it’s definitely a must-read for fans of this series.
Many thanks to Vintage for providing a copy of this novel, on which I chose to write an honest and unbiased review.