DCI Elaine Hope barely survived her last case. Someone is still determined to put an end to her. But could the culprit be one of her London Metropolitan Police colleagues?
Detective Chief Inspector Elaine Hope still bears the scars—both physical and emotional—of the devastating assault that nearly ended her life nine months ago. Now, she wants two things: to salvage a police career in tatters, and to get payback. But who is the ultimate culprit? Is it Anton Srecko, capo of the brutal gangsters who attacked her? Or is it someone within the London Metropolitan Police, who failed to send backup when she most needed help?
Put on desk duty while she recovers from the attack, Elaine runs her rogue investigation in secret. Despite the crime chart on her bedroom wall, a slate of clandestine informers, and a list of likely suspects, she hits a maddening dead end.
Meanwhile, former members of Elaine’s team, Detectives Philip Bull and Simon Costello, find themselves assigned to what appears to be a vicious gangland execution that has taken place in the posh neighbourhood of Kensington. The victim bears a tattoo that links him to the Sreckos, and a mysterious barefoot blonde woman was seen fleeing the scene. Their new DI seems to be quashing the investigation. When they turn to Elaine for help, she’s given one last chance to save her career. But she’ll have to give up her off-the-books investigation and work closely with an old nemesis. Can she?
As Elaine is pushed closer and closer to the edge, the evidence grows ever more perplexing and chilling. Building on A. R. Ashworth’s acclaimed series debut, Two Faced is the second Elaine Hope mystery to deliver nonstop suspense leading to an unexpected and spectacular climax.
About the Author
A. R. Ashworth earned a degree in history before working for twenty years in high tech. Along the way, he developed a lasting love for Paris and London, which inspired his writing. He lives in the Texas Hill Country with his wife, a cheese-seeking Chihuahua, and an oversized tabby cat. This is his second Elaine Hope mystery.
Praise for Two Faced : “A series to watch.” —Booklist
<Souls of Men: "[A] strong debut...This is a procedural with heart, yet it doesn’t shy away from the dark." —Publishers Weekly
"[A] solid British procedural debut...A strong choice for fans of Deborah Crombie." —Library Journal
"In this smart, dark debut, A. R. Ashworth dishes up a gritty, satisfying plate of murder, greed, and psychopathology. The good guys are flawed in wonderfully human ways. And the bad guys? Evil to the bone...A whirlpool of tension that circles inevitably toward both truth and tragedy, with an ending that will leave readers craving for the next offering in the series." —William Kent Krueger, New York Times bestselling and Edgar-Award-winning author of the Connor O’Cork series
"Evil—murderous evil—is afoot in London. Luckily, so is [DI Elaine] Hope...Smart, strong, and determined, she doesn’t give up, won’t back down, and mustn’t be underestimated. We could all use a bit more Hope in our lives." —Jon Jefferson, New York Times bestselling author of Jefferson Bass’s Body Farm mysteries
“In Souls of Men, A. R. Ashworth introduces a worthy protagonist in Detective Elaine Hope. Elaine is an engaging blend of strength and compassion, a competent investigator thrown into a case that could push her to the breaking point...Ashworth’s sensitivity weaves Elaine’s humanity into a satisfying thriller.” —Jaden Terrell, Shamus Award nominee and author of the internationally published Jared McKean mysteries