Dunne, Feb 2004, 24.95, 249 pp.
She started her career in London's Metropolitan Police Force but quickly realized women, in subtle ways, were discriminated against with no chance of advancement. She took a job on the Birchester Police Force and rose up the ranks to become Detective Superintendent. The media find her fascinating, dubbing her the “Hard Detective” because of her strong stance on getting the criminals off the streets and into a cage.
She is temporarily assigned by a senior member of Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary to investigate the Maximum Crimes Squad. This elite special force of police officers deal with a Columbian drug lord who has just taken over the people smuggling business. Harriet Martens is to see how high up corruption goes in the Max but she faces one obstacle after another as the men and women try to stonewall her.
The author has toned down the protagonist's strident speeches thereby making her more approachable and likeable. Her investigative methods are easy to follow and eventually yield results because the heroine is tenacious and determined. A DETECTIVE UNDER FIRE is a very fascinating police procedural in which teamwork and trust in your comrades get the job of placing the criminals behind bars done.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner