Frozen Summer is the third book in a compelling series of crime novels featuring ex-detective Dan Calder.
Dan has made a new life in New Zealand, but an unsolved cold case causes Dan to return to England to investigate the death of murdered drug mule Zoe Summers. Dan is the only suspect in her killing – as an undercover police officer he was at the scene, but he was unconscious for a time so he doesn’t know if he killed her or not. At the time he covered up being there. But the thought he may have somehow caused her death – however unlikely it seems given his character – has been psychologically torturing him over the years, and now he is determined to get to the truth, even if he finds out he is the killer.
Dan takes his wife, Tara, and newborn son to the UK with him. Once in the UK he reunites with old friends and police colleagues, and together they investigate the case – and they discover there is much more than meets the eye in a case that gets increasingly complex.
Author Ian Austin is an ex-police detective, and he brings a vast amount of knowledge to his books, and it is the police procedural element that I enjoyed the most. It gives a real insight to how police really work cases, the interviews, the gathering of evidence, the scene searches – it’s fascinating stuff and the authenticity puts Ian Austin in a different category from other crime writers. And Dan Calder is a character to cheer for, a well-drawn and complex individual. If you haven’t tried a book by Ian Austin, start with the first in this series, The Agency, and work your way to the latest novel. You won’t be disappointed; they are thrilling, well-constructed crime novels.
Reviewer: Karen McMillan
IA Books, RRP $23.99