Cato could recall exactly the moment he no longer wanted to be Matthew Tan’s godfather. It was warm sunny afternoon in late spring…
When Cato Kwong is called in to a brutal murder scene, he quickly realises that this investigation is going to be very personal. The victims are his old friend Francis Tan and his family. the sole survivor is Tan’s eldest son Matthew, who has moved out of home, and is the first suspect. The investigation takes Cato places he never expected to go – including to Shanghai, where he learns about the country of his forbears = both its highs and its lows.
Meanwhile, his boss, DI Hutchens, deals with health issues and ghosts from his own past, and Lara Sumich too has plenty of distractions of her own, even if they are of a very different kind.
Bad Seed is the third title featuring Cato (Phillip) Kwong, a Fremantle based detective with a strong sense of justice and a determination to uncover the truth. Each title stands alone, though Cato is a character you want to read more about, so going back and reading the other two is no hardship.
Bad Seed, by Alan Carter
Fremantle Press, 2015
Available from good bookstores and online.
Cato stepped back with the rest as the shovels came ut and two men began to dig.
A stench rose. The body was crawling with maggots and other insects. Flies descended on the uncovered feast. It was a metre and a half long and it had four legs.
Cato Kwong isn’t convinced that taking a convicted criminal out on the search for a missing girl is a good idea, especially when the victim’s mother is also present. But when the search uncovers nothing more than a decomposing pig carcass, he’s sure that the killer is leading them a wild goose chase. As he works to find out where Bree Petkovic is really buried, another murder happens on his patch. This time it’s a man with his throat slashed in a night club toilet. With organised crime gangs implicated, suspect cops joining in on the investigation, and a growing number of injuries and killings happening, Cato’s desire for some quiet summer nights seems to be slipping away.
Getting Warmer is the second detective story featuring Kato Kwong, a cop who likes to do things mostly by the book, but is also determined to get results and set things to right, goals which sometimes don’t mesh. Newly returned from exile down south, he is now based in Fremantle, and the setting is highlighted with a detail which will delight readers familiar with the port city even while the level and type of crime uncovered may surprise.
With suspense, twists aplenty and intriguing character development, Getting Warmer will appeal to lovers of crime fiction, who will be keen to see more of Cato.
Getting Warmer, by Alan Carter
Fremantle Press, 2013
Available from good bookstores or online.