One Of Our Ministers Is Missing by Alan Johnson – Review.

About The Book

A government minister in the Foreign Office has vanished into thin air.

On holiday in Crete, Lord Bellingham had been solo trekking in the White Mountains when he mysteriously disappeared. After a vast search and rescue operation, the local police have no leads, save for a mobile phone discarded on a cliff edge.

Assistant Commissioner Louise Mangan of the Met Police is sent to assist in the investigation but soon discovers that there are more layers to this case than the local police realise.

Lady Bellingham is less than forthcoming, the family nanny is hiding something, and a scandal is brewing back in London that could destroy the minister’s reputation for good.

Under pressure from the powers that be, can Louise find the missing minister, or will she discover something much more sinister at play? 

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. This is the first book that I have read by this author and on finishing I immediately looked at his earlier books. This was a book that I enjoyed for its originality and its characters.

The disappearance of a British national in Crete would always be a concern for the British police, especially when they are a government minister. Louise, a higher ranking police officer than what would usually be sent to assist is more than happy to go. An opportunity to investigate rather than lead from behind a desk and on an island she knows well. After a rocky start, when she inadvertently offends her colleague in Greece, they work well together. Determined to get answers despite the obstacles placed in their way from unexpected quarters.

Louise was a character I liked a lot. I appreciated the small glimpse of her personal life where you see her missing her daughters, her marriage break up and her singing along to Joni Mitchell whilst home alone. I also liked seeing her fear of retirement from the job she loved. She seemed honest, in her feelings for the friends she made in Crete and her frustration at working from behind a desk instead of detective work.

But there is another equally as important character in this novel, Brady. Seemingly a happily married man with a decent job who lives under the radar. But his real character is nothing like this. He is a killer preparing for his last job. I won’t reveal much more about his storyline because in some ways his character is the most fascinating in the book. He should have been a character I detested but there were aspects of him I appreciated and had sympathy for.

There are a few twists and a handful of characters to dislike but this is a crime novel that despite its subject matter is very lighthearted. 

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