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by Rosemary Aubert
Berkley Prime Crime, March 2002
272 pages
ISBN: 0425184021

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

The Ferryman Will Be There is the third in Rosemary Aubert's brilliant Ellis Portal series. Ellis Portal is one of the most original characters in fiction. Once a judge, he descended into drug use and assault, went to prison and then a mental hospital, and spent several years as a homeless man. Now he is once again wealthy due to a divorce settlement, but can't bring himself to live a life of substance. He does occasionally help out his friend, policeman Matt West, with cases involving the homeless.

A lot of films are made in Toronto. At the premier of one, the famous director Charington Simm is shot dead in front of 800 witnesses, including Simm's daughter Carrie. No one saw the shooter, and Carrie Simm disappears shortly after her father's death. She had once been a street kid, and Matt West asks Ellis Portal to try and find Carrie through his street contacts.

While the plot is a good one, the character of Ellis Portal is enough to keep one interested in the book, as was true in the previous two (Free Reign and The Feast of Stephen). In The Ferryman Will Be There Ellis reunites with his son, loses another home, and gets back in touch with his friend Queenie while solving the mystery. While this book stands alone, it does make plenty of references to things that have happened in the previous two books, and so it is best to read them in order. Highly recommended addition to a highly recommended series.

Reviewed by Mary A. Axford, April 2002

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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