Scotland Yard Superintendent Richard Jury lies in the hospital recovering from the near fatal shooting (see THE BLUE LAST) that left him in a coma. As he slowly begins to feel a little better, Richard is bored with inactivity, needs distraction, and struggles to ignore his starchy nurse.
Richard's assistant Melrose Plant provides the recuperating cop with a juicy tidbit that he overheard in the Grave Maurice Pub involving the daughter of the doctor tending to the injured law enforcement official. Two female patrons were discussing the disappearance of fifteen year old Nell Ryder and her family's valuable thoroughbred Aqueduct. The case of the teen's disappearance is officially cold, but Richard and Melrose begin discussing it. Soon the latter begins investigating the vanishing under Richard's bedside direction.
The latest Jury police procedural depends too much on coincidence and horse breeding than on hard core investigative skills, but fans of the series will enjoy seeing the star returning to his feisty self. Though the mystery is a bit weak as Jury novels go, Melrose and Nurse Bell make the tale fun for readers with their radically different personalities playing the stage through Richard. Predominantly for Martha Grimes' fans, THE GRAVE MAURICE is overall an entertaining tale, just a pint short of what the audience expects from this talented author.

Harriet Klausner

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Harriet Klausner