Voss and Edwards shift the focus away from Lennon and place the lead with DS Masiello in this well-crafted short story. Sweltering in the heat of a Lonfon summer, DS Carmella Masiello appears in court to offer her testimony in a GBH case involving a contractor. At issue is whether a nail gun could have reached far enough onto the estate. When the forensic lab results are delayed, Masiello is approached by CPS Mariel Jenkins to witness a test of her own, which could definitively show the power of the aforementioned weapon. During this amateur testing, the results prove to be more than substantive evidence in the case, but have drastic results for Jenkins’ elderly neighbour. During her time in the witness box, Masiello learns something that sends her right to her boss, DI Patrick Lennon, as she examines the events of that summer afternoon when she and Jenkins undertook to test the nail gun. Could this have been a neighbourly feud gone wrong or simply a horrible accident? Voss and Edwards create a wonderful story to add personality to an already interesting series, giving the limelight to a minor player in the series.
I cannot express how impressed I am with the development of the DS Carmella Masiello character in this story. Voss and Edwards have built a wonderfully cryptic mystery in which she can engage and left the reader to follow along, as they have done previously with Lennon and the rest of the MIT9 team. Leaving doubt strewn throughout, the reader must construct their own views and work alongside Masiello, who was hoodwinked from the beginning. I look forward to any tie-ins that may be found in subsequent DI Lennon novels, as I did not see anything that tossed back referenced to the previous published works. Well presented, thoroughly enjoyable, and perfect for that lazy hour in the sun, or while sipping a mug of coffee.
Kudos, Madam Voss and Mr. Edwards for such a delightful piece. I cannot wait to see what else you have in mind for Lennon and Masiello.