These days Maori cop Tito Ihaka is leading a quieter life in the Wairarapa. Five years earlier he’d sought to step into the shoes of his long-time boss Detective Inspector Finbar McGrail after the latter’s promotion to Auckland District Commander. Dogged by the fall-out from his handling of the hit and run death of a prominent businesswoman, Ihaka was overlooked for a younger, more presentable candidate. After a men’s room confrontation with his new boss’s right-hand man, Ihaka was sent into exile. Out of the blue McGrail summons him back to Auckland. Christopher Lilywhite, the businesswoman’s terminally ill husband whom Ihaka suspected was behind his wife’s death, wants to see him. Lilywhite confesses that he had his wife murdered, but he dealt with the hit-man at arm’s length so has no idea who he is. In quick succession Lilywhite and another potential source of information are murdered. Ihaka’s old rival Detective Inspector Tony Charlton takes control of the case but with more corpses turning up and Auckland Central stretched to breaking point, he agrees to let Ihaka investigate the apparently unrelated murder of a young man about town. As the investigations expand uncovering a blackmail operation preying on married women, gang activities controlled from inside Paremeremo prison and possible police corruption, Ihaka realises that the cases are related and he’s hunting a faceless and prolific hit-man. Or is the hit-man hunting him?
Finished reading Paul Thomas's 'Death on Demand' on flight to NY. Big, bruising police procedural set in New Zealand. Excellent.
— Ian Rankin (@Beathhigh) January 29, 2014
@HachetteNZ Mazey, gripping plot, terrific maverick cop, violent, profane, funny.
— Ian Rankin (@Beathhigh) January 30, 2014