Dancers in the Wind Anne Cates
When I requested this book from Urbane Publications I did not realise what a treat I was in for.
I had never heard of Ann Coates before, but I don’t think I’ll forget her. In fact, I think we’re going to be hearing a lot from her. This book is great.
The main protagonist for this story is the single mom, and freelance journalist Hannah Weybridge.
Hannah is struggling to make a living since the birth of her daughter, but is given a job interviewing one of the street walking prostitutes of London, and one of the police officers tasked with sorting out the prostitution problems of the capital city.
The prostitute she interviews is “Princes” the second protagonist of the story. A young girl who has run away from home and ended up on the streets of London.
The Police Officer, and third protagonist, is Detective Inspector Tom Jordan. What Hannah doesn’t know about DCI Jordan is that he is leading an enquiry into the disappearance, and possible murder, of at least three young prostitutes, all from the same area that Princess works in.
Anne Coates has given this story an extra sense of threat and realism by setting it in the mid 1990’s. An era when old school policing was still in the minds of the public, and when there was still a few “old-school coppers” running things how they wanted to, and not necessarily within the bounds of the law.
When Princess turns up at Hannah’s house having suffered a severe assault, she begs Hannah not to get the police involved.
The story the takes a path that finds Hannah getting conflicted by her own moral compass. Does she allow Princess to stay with her and her infant daughter; does she involve DCI Jordan, and it doesn’t help that she is beginning to find him more interesting than she expected but is still unsure of whether he can be trusted.
From her own aspect Princess is not sure how much to trust Hannah. She has to stay off the streets but she also has to make money. What she doesn’t want is to bump into any of her old clients. What she does do is keep journals in notebooks.
The more the story goes on the more intriguing it becomes.
I don’t want to give anything away, so no more about the storyline, but I can say I enjoyed every page from beginning to end. The pace never stops.
Anne Coates has picked a great era to set this story in. It is given more credibility being set in the 90’s than if it was set in the modern day.
Not only that, but when you finish the book you will understand what I mean when I say the storyline is given even more credence by what we now know happened in those times, and who was involved.
An absolute treat of a book. The last few pages are a preview her next book. God it’s going to be a long wait.