PIG'S HEAD - David Owen
An old release - originally published in 1994, Pig's Head is the first in the 4 Pufferfish novels by David Owen and so far it's been the only one I've never been able to get my hands on. Imagine my sheer delight when Kill City in Swanston Street revealed 2 copies!
Detective Inspector Franz Heineken (or Pufferfish as he calls himself) is called into investigate the discovery of a severed head in the rubbish at a crowded Tasmanian caravan park. Initial concerns are that the caravan park, which is fenced and shutdown every night to keep out undesirables, may still contain a deranged killer, but quickly it becomes obvious that the killer is not your typical head removing lunatic and what's more to the point, Pufferfish himself has allowed them out of the park.
The investigation moves between Tasmania and the mainland as the killer is tracked and the incredibly difficult task of identifying the victim continues at Pufferfish pace.
*** From the back of the book:
Pufferfish (Contusus brevicandus): Body moderately short, pectorals rounded. Slow swimmer. Scavenger in the mud, at home in the murky shallows, where it roots out and feeds on detritus. Inflatable body able to bloat and even explode under extreme provocation.
Great series - huge pity there were only 4 of them!
“There are good cops, there are bad cops… and there is Pufferfish, aka Detective Inspector Franz Heineken.
Pufferfish. Feroxodon multistriatus. (The Ferocious Pufferfish gets its name from its tendency to attack people unprovoked and it has been known to bite the toes off swimmers.’ – Australian Museum.)
A severed head rolls out of the rubbish in a crowded coastal Tasmanian caravan park, and the hunt is on for the killers … and for their victim, a man no one seems to miss, a man no one wants to know. As Pufferfish digs deeper, he runs hard up against mainland law and order, and the smell of corruption grows”.