Vera Stanhope books (as well as the wonderful TV series based on the characters). I had pretty high expectations going into this book but never expected to be blown away.
What a great reading experience! There's an almost nostalgic vibe as the plot reveals events and crimes from the late 1990s surrounding an expensive nightclub called the Seagull. In addition to the extremely well written narrative, there are murders (multiple) and cover-ups and corrupt police and organized crime.
The book also fills out Vera's back-story with more information about her father, Hector, and his bird-watching and poaching associates. I really love the development of Vera and the people on her team. From the first book (The Crow Trap), Vera and crew were well fleshed out and believable, and the plots have been solid and well crafted. This book is so well written and clearly Ms. Cleeves has hit her (masterful) stride. In my opinion, it's the best and most intricate one yet in the series.
There are plot twists and reveals right up to the very end and a really shocking denouement. I sat in my reading chair with my mouth (literally) hanging open.
Beautifully well written and completely compelling. Seriously.. five stars doesn't come close to being enough.
Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher.