The Langstone Harbour Murders by Pauline Rowson

The Langstone Harbour Murders by Pauline Rowson

30th August 2023.

The second DI Horton novel, set in Portsmouth, is another complex murder mystery that starts with the murder of the headmistress of a local school. Inquiries reveal a progressive, ambitious woman who was not universally liked or appreciated. Invariably, this means plenty of suspects and motives, touching upon other prominent locals.

For Andy Horton it’s a race against time. The promotion he thought was his is heading elsewhere. If he can’t solve the murder by the end of the week, he’ll have to pass the investigation over. Then there’s his dissolving marriage and access to his daughter, to add to his challenges.

When the deputy headmaster is found murdered, Andy’s problems seem insurmountable. But he’s not a quitter and slowly pieces together the clues to solve the case, leading to an exciting climax in the harbour.

It’s an intriguing plot with several false trails and a character with more than his fair share of troubles to contend with. There’s plenty of life in the backstory to counter the murders and some loose ends to be dealt with in future stories.


The head mistress of a Portsmouth school is found brutally murdered on an old structure in the middle of Langstone Harbour. Detective Andy Horton of Portsmouth CID leads the investigation.

A note is found on the victim with the words ‘Have you forgotten ME?’ scrawled on it.

And a wad of money covered in honey, and wrapped in a five pound note is also discovered on her person.

The victim is Jessica Langley, a steely, determined woman who has made enemies on her path to success. But did any of them hate her enough to want her dead?

All the evidence points to a killer who wanted to leave a very particular message.

Horton is in a race against time to piece together the clues and stop the killer. With the clock ticking and Superintendent Uckfield pressing for results, Horton is forced to make a decision that will put his life on the line.

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