Gently with the Painters (Inspector George Gently, Book 7)
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The death of a young artist leaves Gently desperately piecing together the portrait of a murderer. When artist Shirley Johnson is murdered and her body dumped outside a provincial police headquarters, Gently is despatched from London to Northshire to take over the investigation. The prime suspect appears to be the woman's husband, a former bomber pilot with a guilty secret, but the other members of the woman's art group also have strong views about her and her controversial final painting - Dark Destroyer. With so many suspects to consider, Gently must get to the bottom of the mystery before the murderer manages to slip through his fingers.
two schools of thought?’ ‘Splendid, splendid!’ Mallows patted him on the shoulder. ‘My opinion of you was never higher, Superintendent. You’ve hit the target first go – we’ve got a split down our middle. It’s tradition versus modernism that rocks the cellar walls.’ ‘Aymas, Seymour and that lot …’ ‘Precisely. Aymas is their champion.’ ‘Wimbush, Lavery and Shoreby—’ ‘They’re the shock troopers of the opposition. Numerically, Superintendent, the two factions are about the same, but the
to turn me into a human being.’ ‘I’d like to see you later this morning, sir.’ ‘Then you’ll have to come along to my studio, Gently. I’m a professional, you know, not a mewling amateur – I stand to my easel between ten and one.’ Gently chuckled to himself. How the phrase suited Mallows! One could visualize his stocky figure planted, fencer-like, before a canvas. Off-hand he couldn’t remember ever having seen a small Mallows picture; they were created for noble rooms and for great carved and
Monday night? Gently snapped shut his notebook and pushed his way across to the booth. There, temporarily free of inquirers, Watts was adding up some figures on a pad. ‘Are you making plenty of hay?’ ‘Yes, sir! This is our best … our best ever. Even Arthur Wimbush … I really think we’re going to sell out …!’ ‘Have you sold Mr Baxter’s poster?’ ‘Yes, sir. I saw you talking to him …’ ‘Doesn’t he paint anything else besides posters?’ ‘Oh yes, sir. He paints landscapes too.’ ‘Hmn.’ Gently
come to forage, he found that very sick lady lying stiff in the morning dew. ‘When you’re ready, if you like, I’ll take you round and show you the spot, but you’ll see how we found her in these photographs here. There wasn’t a lot of blood owing to the knife being left in, but we found one or two splashes leading from a spot about ten yards away. ‘He simply stabbed her, I imagine, and then lugged her over to the dustbins. As you see here, he chucked her handbag and coat down beside her. She
thinking of parting with the old Riley in the garage. How was it that an external like rank had this effect on him? ‘Some of the liver you were frying … were there any letters for me?’ ‘Go on, Mr Gently! You’ve put your grapefruit on them.’ And also, he remembered, he had cut his outing in the garden. With his mind fixed on the Johnsons he’d gone straight down to the breakfast table, barely pausing at the door to wish Mrs Jarvis a good morning. Was it intuition, perhaps? He read the relevant