I Knew You Would Call

Reviewed by Andy Smart

How would you pitch a novel about a lesbian, Basque, detective whose day job is as a telephone psychic, to a publisher? Obviously Kate Allen did a first rate job as that is the basic fact about I Knew You Would Call - and it would have been a shame if it hadn't been written...

Marta Goicochea (any chance of you pronouncing that as a sound file on your website Kate?) is the heroine of this book. She works on a women's swithboard doing tarot readings over the phone, at a desk adjacent to Louann who staffs the telephone sex line, and is in the middle of a very long recovery from her breakup with the psychologically abusive Teri which has left her with little appetite for anything other than watching Star Trek, feeding her cats, and going to work. She shares her house with other lesbians and had a gang of potentially violent skinheads as neighbours on the other side of the street.

One day she takes a call from Karen, who is worried about hate mail she has recieved from her ex lover's new partner Polly. Shortly after this Polly is in jail accused of murdering Karen and Marta is sucked into the case as she is one of the few people Polly will talk to. Frankly it all gets a bit involved after that. However it is as readable as Kate Allen's other books. Fans of the 'Alison and Stacy' novels will be delighted to see that most of the people from that series turn up in this book, Liz the lawyer and Alison herself for example.

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