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However, life has other plans for him. Coffin learns that all of his ghosts are not behind him when a parcel containing dismembered limbs is found outside a woman's refuge. The Serena Seddon Shelter for battered wives is located on Barrow Street, not far from Coffin's own home. But the link to Coffin is more sinister than mere proximity: his initials are written on the package and the shelter is housed in the building where he lived when he first arrived in the Second City. This discovery opens a door through which troop a succession of horrible and violent events including sudden death.
Coffin's Ghost is another sterling entry in a series that has been continually praised for its ability to delve into the darker side of life and will leave readers wondering just how safe their secrets are.
much older woman. A whore, I think. The legs give it away.’ ‘That’s hard.’ ‘It’s what Robbie said, the way he described them. It’s likely, though, isn’t it?’ ‘I can’t say.’ Or didn’t want to. If this was Anna, then she had gone a long way down hill. The hellish thing was it might be true. ‘The legs and arms must mean something . . .’ ‘A thoroughly unpleasing killer,’ said Coffin. ‘But until you get the head and torso you don’t know how she died. Or why.’ ‘The informed opinion is a sexual
briskly back down the corridor to the interview rooms. She threw open the door. In the room, the Chief Commander and George Freedom sat on either side of the table. Radley gave them both a quick look. He was still puzzled, unsure why he had been brought here. In the corner of the room was Bill Eager, looking depressed. He managed to give Radley a tired smile. ‘Good morning, sir,’ Radley managed to Coffin. ‘Good morning. Now say hello to Mr Freedom.’ Radley stared. ‘Eh?’ ‘Greet Mr Freedom,
favourite with her) and the limbs in Barrow Street. It might even be that it was the killing of the cat that had tipped her over to one side: she was a notable animal lover. She was also believed to have a mink coat, if not two, hanging in her cupboard. But that was Mimsie: many-sided. At the counter the new cook was making a sandwich for a stallholder to take away. He was issuing orders about what he wanted and what he did not want between the bread and butter: ham, a slice of cheddar, no
a famous college in the University of London, a period nursing in a hospital, and another time working as an assistant in a care centre. ‘Although goodness knows, no community could be more off sex than we are here. Had too much of it.’ ‘Cheer up,’ advised her fellow worker and assistant. Eve Jones was also a nurse and often needed in that capacity. ‘I could call myself Mother Mary.’ She was making some coffee. ‘Have a cup? It’s the real stuff, extravagant, I know, but I need it today.’ ‘I
didn’t do more than pick it up and put it down.’ She went to the window to look out. ‘Gone now.’ Mary pushed a tin towards her. ‘Have a biscuit. Fortnurn’s best . . . it’s all right, a present from my mother.’ Her mother always chose the best she could afford. And this went for clothes and scents. Her mother thought she was mad to work where she did, while saying fondly that she admired her for it. Mary chose a biscuit with nuts in it. ‘I suppose the forensic lot will be in and looking us over.