THE ROSE BENNETT MYSTERIES
They say that the love of money is the root of all evil. And doesn’t Rose Bennett know it …
DEAD ON ACCOUNT
It’s a sweltering August evening when bank clerk Pandora Mitchell disappears from sleepy Market Melbourne, evaporating into thin air as she runs the country lanes around the town.
For Rose Bennett, banking consultant turned private investigator, the event shouldn’t be more than a headline in a newspaper. Except that Rose is investigating a bank fraud at the East & Northern Bank, and Pandora Mitchell’s evidence is the key to her enquiries.
As Rose begins to uncover evidence of Pandora’s involvement in the fraud, her colleagues at the bank begin to close ranks. Soon old acquaintances from the past begin to look more like enemies than friends, and as word spreads that Rose is assisting DI George Mulligan to investigate Pandora’s disappearance, someone makes it pretty clear that her presence in the town isn’t welcome.
But as the days pass, and fears for the missing girl grow, there’s more at stake than a bank’s reputation, and Rose doesn’t scare that easily …
A November sleet blowing off the North Sea can chill a man through to the bone. So when Andy Miller’s mangled body is found outside his Scarborough mansion flat, crushed under the wheels of his own BMW, no one can understand why his coat and shoes are missing.
Tracing the culprit behind a threatening phone call to a customer in arrears with his credit card payments should be a straightforward exercise for experienced investigator Rose Bennett. Except that Andy Miller worked for the East & Northern Bank and his death lands right in the middle of her investigation.
There’s no question that Andy was murdered, and as the repercussions of his death ripple out across the bank they hit those around him hard. His girlfriend is inconsolable, his flatmate is bereft, and his flatmate’s girlfriend … well, she used to be Andy’s girlfriend, so things are complicated.
Murder isn’t Rose Bennett’s field of expertise, but when DI George Mulligan asks her to be his eyes and ears within the bank she isn’t short of things to observe. Like Andy’s inconsolable girlfriend finding comfort in the eager arms of his flatmate, and his flatmate’s girlfriend not looking too happy at the idea of history repeating itself …
Alice Blacklaws thought she knew Nathan Kingsley.
A talented sportsman, an honest businessman, and a doting fiancé, he’d loved and cherished both Alice and her daughter Olivia long before they decided to tie the knot. But when someone pays a contract killer to shoot Nathan dead on the day of their wedding, and his devious brother Luke tries to disinherit the grieving Alice of everything Nathan had ever done for her … well, maybe it’s time for Alice to think again.
When Rose Bennett is asked to liaise with the dead man’s family on behalf of the East & Northern Bank, she isn’t sure what she’ll uncover. If a customer dies in suspicious circumstances, and his accounts suggest signs of financial irregularity, you can never be sure of the fall out. But as she attempts to untangle Nathan’s twisted financial affairs, a pattern begins to emerge.
Nathan Kingsley was keeping secrets, secrets someone wanted him to carry to the grave. And as those secrets are revealed, and danger comes ever closer to Alice and to Luke, Rose finds herself facing the very worst kind of killer, a killer without a conscience.
For the man who killed Nathan Kingsley, compassion is nothing, if the price is right. And duty is just a business obligation, to deliver death to order for whoever is paying the bill.