Monday, September 17, 2012

Hard Frost by R.D. Wingfield

I am finishing up my fourth Frost. (That kind of rolls off the tongue like Firth of Forth). Dear Detective Inspector Jack Frost of the Denton Divison Police Department. This coarse, curmudgeonly character grows on me. Here are the things I like about him:

He works on multiple cases at once ranging from murder to kidnapping to petty larceny. Most fictional detectives try to solve one case per book. This gives the story a more realistic feel and the timeline in each book usually covers just a few days.

Frost hates paperwork. He is willing to let another detective take the glory for solving a case rather than waste time writing up reports.

He doesn't mind admitting it when his ideas or suspicions turn out to be wrong. He just moves on to his next plan with the goal always in mind of catching the bad guys.

Frost doesn't have a regular partner. It seems that in every book there is a new person sitting at the other desk in his messy, smoke-filled office. In Hard Frost, the new detective happens to be a woman, Liz Maud. She and Frost get off to a rough start, but I think she is beginning to like him just a tiny, tiny bit. OK, maybe not like, but respect.

When a family has to be notified of a death, although Frost hates to be the one to carry the tragic news, he does it anyway with as much gentleness as he can muster. There does beat a heart underneath his tattered, dirty raincoat and unpressed suit.

He doesn't suffer fools gladly. Case in point:  his superior Superintendent Mr. Mullett. Frost calls him Horn-rimmed Harry. Mr. Mullett is the antithesis of Frost: always on the lookout for the political advantage; pressed and polished to the nth degree; and, constantly nosing in when it is most inconvenient bringing only problems, never solutions.

Yes, our Mr. Frost gets the job done. Maybe not with style, but done nonetheless.


  1. Belle, I have just spent one half of an hour catching up on all your readings, from Bryson to the Marigold Hotel, and that charming Indiana bookstore. So much to ponder as I settle in after two weeks away. Wonderful, wonderful posts.

    1. Hi lifeonthecutoff. I know you have been busy with your family. I miss your posts and hope you are back. Thanks for taking time to catch up with me. Now it's time for you to catch up with yourself! Read on.