Rag and Bone

A Billy Boyle World War II Mystery
Rag and Bone: A Billy Boyle World War II Mystery. Soho, dist. by Consortium. Sept. 2010. c.320p. ISBN 978-1-56947-849-3. $25. M
The fifth book (after Evil for Evil) in Benn's well-received historical series finds military investigator Billy Boyle in London in 1943. A Soviet NKVD (secret police) official has been found murdered in a style eerily reminiscent of the 1940 Katyn Forest massacre of captive Polish Army officers, and the crime threatens to disrupt diplomatic relations between the Western Allies and the Soviet Union. General Eisenhower has ordered Boyle, his nephew and a former Boston police detective now assigned to his staff, to solve it. Who's to blame? A vengeful Polish officer in exile? London's criminal underworld, still thriving despite the war? Or agents of more sinister forces? Both allies and enemies have secrets to protect, and Boyle, scion of a proud family of Irish cops, finds the convolutions of wartime murder and morality as challenging as anything his father encountered on the streets of Southie.
VERDICT Mystery fans will enjoy Boyle's investigative adventures, and readers of World War II historical fiction will savor the gritty glimpse of life in battered wartime London. [See Prepub Mystery, LJ 4/1/10.]

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