A few weeks ago, I interviewed Wendy Jones on the launch of her third book, Killer’s Cross. I have now read Killer’s Cross, and I can tell you, Dear Reader, it gets very scary towards the end.
The Dundee murder glut continues under DI Shona McKenzie’s watch. This time, the victims are being dumped outside churches, dressed as clergy, but with a cross carved upon their chests and every drop of blood drained from their bodies (shades of Merchant of Venice, perhaps?). Unlike the other two novels which take place in bitter Scottish snowstorms, in this one Shona McKenzie works in an overpowering heatwave. Although now in a relationship with gentle Procurator Fiscal Douglas, she is as relentless and confrontational as ever. In fact, her rudeness to virtually everyone is breathtaking, so it’s hardly surprising she gets into trouble with the Chief Constable for it. However, she’s a leader who inspires confidence and respect. Just how much loyalty she has inspired in her team only becomes apparent towards the end of ‘Killers Cross’.
As in all the other McKenzie novels, Killer’s Cross includes chilling inset chapters from the killer’s point of view, generally planning his/her next murder with cold clinical precision. Some of the events at the very end are shocking and unexpected, but reflect real happenings.
Shona’s team is still eating for Scotland, even though her deputy, Peter, has been put on a diet – by his wife. The team – Peter, Roy, Nina, Abigail, Jason – is growing, not just in size, but in character, and even the Chief is showing chinks in his armour of disapproval. Shona, a relatively recent return-ee from Oxfordshire, is still struggling with the Scottish dialect and Scottish nicknames. Why is Roy called Roy, for instance? She’s forgotten.
Wendy writes in present tense, unusual for crime fiction. (This is something I forgot to mention in the interview.)
Killers Cross is available from Wendy Jones’ website. A good read!
Wishing you a very happy Christmas. Too tired to write anymore.