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Sweet Little Lies    by Caz Frear order for
Sweet Little Lies
by Caz Frear
Order:  USA  Can
Harper, 2018 (2018)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Here's an excellent new police procedural, with a difference - Caz Frear's Sweet Little Lies, starring a rather insecure twenty-six year old Detective Constable Cat Kinsella in London, England.

As the story opens, Cat has been required to take counselling sessions by her admired mentor, DCI Steele, after a minor breakdown at a horrific crime scene where she found 'a blood-soaked child' in a prostitute's bedsit. The scene triggered a response, probably based on Cat's own family secrets.

When she was eight and her family was visiting her Gran in Mulderrin, Ireland, Catrina heard her beloved father (a womanizer) tell a 'big snarling monster of a lie' to police about a missing local teen (Maryanne Doyle). Later, she found evidence that her father and Maryanne had been together. Their relationship has been fractured ever since.

Cat is on a Murder Investigation Team, called to the scene of the killing of a woman, near her father's pub. Initially identified as Alice Lapaine, the victim is later discovered to be the long missing Maryanne Doyle - why did she stay hidden for all this time, who killed her, and for what reason?

Terrified that her father might be involved, Cat keeps that fear - and other secrets - from her bosses, risking her future while obsessing over the investigation. As all this develops, and the trail of evidence leads closer and closer to Cat's dad, she meets and is attracted to Maryanne's brother.

It's an intricate puzzle involving IVF, human trafficking, an aging gangster, and more than one dysfunctional family. But it does get sorted by the end of the novel ... after quite a few surprising twists and turns. Don't miss this outstanding debut mystery - I hope we'll see more of Cat Kinsella.

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