A Picture of Innocence - Lew MatthewsLondon: Piatkus Crime, 1996, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good — in Very Good Dust Wrapper. Gently bruised at the head of the spine and the top corners of the boards with commensurate wear to the dust wrapper. Pages very gently age-tanned.
From the cover: “Albert ‘Wheezy’ Wallis is a professional burglar of the old school — with his own strict moral code that has never stopped him from shopping small time drug dealers to the police. So when he turns up dead in a car full of exhaust fumes, with handcuff bruises on his wrists, the police assume that his death is a simple case of underworld revenge.
But his friend, Hampstead crime reporter (and secret multi-millionaire) Horatio Parker, is not convinced. Parker, who just happens to own the Hampstead Explorer newspaper which employs him, discovers a baffling link between Wheezy and a priceless painting about to be auctioned by an exclusive London art gallery.
A visit to France to speak to the art expert who authenticated the painting results in a terrifying ordeal which nearly claims Parker’s life. After that, he is more determined than ever to unravel the villainous plot behind the enigmatic eighteenth-century portrait of a young farm girl — with the assistance of gorgeous French girl Eve Dupont, a cheeky Cockney taxi driver and a mountainous bodyguard called Thumper. And they reveal a conspiracy more murderous and contemptible than poor Wheezy Wallis could ever have imagined…
Laced with humour and unorthodox detection, A Picture of Innocence marks a welcome return for Horatio Parker.”