A quick review for a series that is easy to read and quite enjoyable to boot.
The characters are nicely drawn and sympathetic. There is onviously more mileage to be had with Insp Colbeck and co.
The plots are interesting, wearing the research that the author has conducted lightly on their sleeve. As an example I thought I'd caught the author out in this, the latest instalment, where he has one of the protagonists getting a dose of morphine. In 1854? Surely not. But a quick check shows that morphine was first introduced to English hospitals in about 1843, so he got me there.
One point that intrigues me in this and indeed other books in the series is how quickly the good Inspector gets around the country. Surely some of his journeys must be impossible - but I bet the author has got his research bang on and that such journeys were actually quicker then than now. Is he making a point with this? Come on you railway buffs, could this be true?
Anyway, these are not strictly "whodunits" as the "Bad guy" is usually revealed early doors, so these should be seen as enjoyable period romps, with more than a dash of humour and uncharacteristic for the genre, blood and guts.
Having said all that, having just read these books one after the other this, the fifth was just a tad repetitive (eg a fair bit of reintroducing back story already covered in the other volumes) but for a light, enjoyable (yes that word again) and interesting read, this series, and this volume, fits the bill admirably