Friday, June 19, 2009

Bait-Nick Brownlee

Bait
Nick Brownlee
Minotaur, Jul 7 2009, $25.95
ISBN: 9780312550219

In Mombassa, Kenya former Scotland Yard Flying Squad police detective Jake Moore co-owns a minor sport fishing outfit, Britannia Fishing Tours Ltd. Jake and his partner British expatriate Harry Philliskirk owe an Arab oil provider $17,000 for diesel fuel at a time that their business is in trouble due to the "Ernies" tourists. They are frightened by unrest and a teetering economy back home andare not coming to catch big fish in Kenya.

Harry gets involved in transporting hash while Jake works with another boat owner Dennis Bentley. Murders occur over seemingly minor inncidents leading to honest Coast Province Detective Inspector Daniel Jouma to investigate at a time others are in country causing further hostilities between the ethnic groups. Over his head, Daniel asks Jake for help.

This is an entertaining Kenyan police procedural private investigative thriller that provides the audience some insight into the country although much of what the reader sees is unpleasant viciousness that enhances the investigation as the clues lead to the nastier underbelly of society. The story line is fast-paced and the two cops top rate. Although Nick Brownlee skates around the major issues confronting the country, fans will enjoy the aptly named BAIT.

Harriet Klausner