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The Rising Tide: Vera Stanhope #10    by Ann Cleeves order for
Rising Tide
by Ann Cleeves
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2022 (2022)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The Rising Tide follows The Darkest Evening as the tenth of Ann Cleeves' ever popular mystery series starring strong willed, heavy set DI Vera Stanhope and her colleagues in Northumberland, England. Though Vera relies on DS Joe Ashworth most, she's been mentoring young DC Holly Clarke, who's as committed to the job as she is.

The episode opens on the regular reunion of a group of friends on Holy Island. The island is accessed via a causeway when the tide is low. The group first met fifty years before on a school trip, followed by a tragic accident five years later when one of them (Isobel) drowned trying to cross the causeway as the tide was rising.

In addition to the young teacher, Judy, who led the original group and Isobel, there was Philip (now a priest); maternal deli owner Annie; her ex, Daniel, now partnered with North Northumberland's Police Commissioner; Ken (now married to Lou and suffering early Alzheimer's); Rick who has recently lost his BBC show due to allegations of sexual misconduct and is writing a book; and Rick's ex, Charlotte.

Philip, Annie, Ken, Lou, and Rick attend the reunion. The morning after their arrival, they find Rick hanged in his room - suicide? Vera and her team investigate what turns out to be murder. It starts as a slow and steady police procedural, but crescendos in edge-of-the-chair tension and action that leaves Vera desolate.

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