CHILDREN OF THE REVOLUTION. By Peter Robinson. William Morrow. 336 pages. $25.99.
In Peter Robinson's latest, "Children of the Revolution," Inspector Banks searches for answers in the case of Gavin Miller, a former college lecturer whose lifeless body has been found at the bottom of an old railway embankment.
Four years ago, Miller's life had begun a downward spiral after he was accused of improper conduct by two female students. He lost his job and had been living as a recluse, but no one expected him to be the victim of murder.
As Banks and his team work the case, the clues point in differing directions.
Although seemingly penniless, Gavin had 5,000 pounds (about $8,500) in his pocket when he died. Where did the money come from? Was he blackmailing someone? Being blackmailed? Selling drugs? Why did he have a seven-minute telephone conversation with Lady Veronica Chambers the week before he died, and why does she deny knowing him?
As Banks struggles to piece together the puzzle and figure out whether the motive has something to do with Miller's recent past or the revolutionary movement of the early '70s, he's warned by his superiors to tread carefully. He's been mentioned for a promotion, but if he doesn't watch his step, he may end up with no job at all.
As usual, Robinson does a fine job of portraying life in the Yorkshire Dales, weaving together a diverse cast of suspects and police inspectors.
However, the conclusion of the case left this reader feeling slightly unsatisfied, perhaps because the solution seemed a bit mundane when measured against the other possibilities. No matter, though. Robinson still tells an engaging tale. Let's just hope he doesn't retire Banks anytime soon.
Reviewer Christine Randall McGee is marketing coordinator for The Post and Courier.