Hello, today I have an excerpt for you for the novel The Development by Jackie Kabler.
After a stressful week, TV reporter Cora Baxter is ready for a quiet weekend. But what she hadn’t counted on was witnessing the shocking death of a young woman on her way home. She discovers seventeen-year-old Leanne had been protesting against a new housing development, angering the powerful establishment. Leanne’s death is ruled a suicide, but when puzzling information comes to light, Cora decides to investigate further.
She doesn’t know what an unscrupulous businessman, a suspended police officer and hate-mail sending neighbours have to do with the case – but she knows there is a news story there.
With her eccentric camera crew on hand to help, can Cora tie the strands of Leanne’s case together – or will other forces interfere?
The Development is the third in the Cora Baxter Mysteries series.
At the start of the book, TV reporter Cora Baxter had a run-in with a particularly unpleasant police officer who was subsequently suspended from duty. And now DCI Gordon Gregory seems to have a strange interest in the death of a young woman, even attending her funeral…but why?
It was raining softly as Leanne Brimley’s coffin was lowered slowly into the grave, the light, steady kind of rain which appears innocuous at first but then seems to make you far, far wetter and colder than the pounding, driving kind ever does, seeping into your pores and chilling your very bones. A leaden sky glowered at the few dozen mourners who’d gathered at South Bristol Cemetery, the scattering of school friends – released from lessons early for the occasion on this Thursday afternoon – neighbours and relatives standing now with lowered heads as the vicar said his final prayers in a low monotone. Detective Constable James Jordan and Detective Chief Inspector Gordon Gregory stood at a respectful distance, watching as the committal service came to a close and the dead girl’s mother and brother, so like her with their red hair and pale skin, were led away, the mother sobbing quietly, the boy’s face tight and white despite the thick covering of freckles. As the graveyard emptied, Gregory turned to Jordan.
‘Thanks for coming, mate. I needed to see that. Things are shit at the moment – that little bitch being put in the ground has been the one bright spot in the past couple of weeks. Sorry if that sounds nasty, but it’s true.’
Jordan flinched a little, but nodded. ‘No problem, boss. I’m not on shift today anyway, so it was something to do. Fancy a pint, on the way home?’
Gregory smiled. ‘Definitely. I want to talk to you anyway. Something I need to tell you. Just give me a minute. I’ll meet you by the gate.’
He stood still for a moment as Jordan headed off across the muddy grass, then walked slowly to the graveside, where a cemetery worker was laying the last of the floral tributes on the mound of soil that now covered Leanne Brimley’s coffin. The man touched his forehead deferentially and moved away as Gregory approached, and the DCI gave him a nod, then stood in silence for a full minute, staring at the freshly piled earth. What a relief, he thought. What a bloody great relief. And when he finally turned away and went to join James Jordan, he was smiling.
You can get your copy from Amazon UK.
Thanks for reading.