Cover image for In and out : a Don Packham and Frank Mitchell mystery
In and out : a Don Packham and Frank Mitchell mystery
Coward, Mat.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Waterville, Me : Five Star, 2001.
Physical Description:
231 pages ; 23 cm.
Format :


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X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



When the body a member of the local pub's darts team is found bludgeoned to death during a night of celebration over a championship game, Detective Inspector Don Packham and his partner, DC Frank Mitchell, accept an unspoken challenge from a clever killer.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

The second British mystery starring manic-depressive Detective Inspector Don Packham and his sidekick, Detective Constable Frank Mitchell, is so immensely enjoyable that readers may find themselves portioning the novel out, a few pages at a time, to make it last longer. There is a plot here--a darts-playing woman is apparently murdered by one of her teammates--but it is distinctly, joyously secondary to the characters themselves. Packham, who alternates between being pitifully depressed and buoyantly cheerful (sometimes on the same page), is one of the most original, engaging, and likable detectives to come down the pike in many a year. (In the pantheon of British detectives, he belongs right up there with Frost, Morse, and Dalgliesh--not that he is derivative of any of them in any way.) His inexperienced sidekick, the pleasant Frank Mitchell, spends much of his time adjusting his behavior to suit Packham's unpredictable moods; he seems to be teaching Packham how to deal with his emotional turbulence while Packham teaches him how to be a detective. Their dialogue is so snappy, so sparkling, that listening to these two men discussing even the most mundane things--the telephone book, perhaps, or train schedules--would be entertaining. Listening to them reason out the solution to a homicide is simply delightful. Anyone who reads British procedurals but has yet to meet Packham and Mitchell has a rare treat in store for them. --David Pitt