Harper, June 19 2012, $24.95
NYPD homicide detectives Ellie Hatcher and J.J. Rogan conduct a cursory inquiry into the death of sixteen year old Julie Whitmire before deciding the teen killed herself. Everyone else officially involved agrees with their assertion as the spoiled teen’s body was found with slashed wrists in a tub and her body was filled with drugs and alcohol, and she left a note behind. The case particularly hits home hard on Ellie’s psychic as a reminder that her father’s death was ruled a suicide too.
Though her parents neglected their daughter in life except for material things and social status, they are affluent as Julie’s dad is a music bigwig. Julie’s mom who got homicide involved in the first place uses her influence again to get Hatcher and Rogan to look deeper as she swears her child would never kill herself. Hatcher and Rogan question Julie’s friends like Ramona though Ellie continues to believe a suicide occurred while J.J. has changed his minds.
The fourth Elle Hatcher police procedural (see 212) is an entertaining police procedural due mostly to the lead female cop unable to accept anything but a suicide even when evidence begins to point to murder and her partner is starting to lean in that direction. Hatcher’s stubbornness hurts their inquiry when she writes off clues. Ellie’s problems with her ADA boyfriend seems shallow when compared to stepparents raping their young and parents emancipating their teens who end up on the street Still this is a strong investigative thriller as Hatcher proves a major toad in the road.