ABDUCTION: An Angel Over Rimini

It is 2002 and little Penelope Scratchford has been abducted in Italy. The Italian State Police has given up its investigation and believes her parents to be responsible for her disappearance and her probable murder, but cannot prove it. The British authorities believe she is still alive, as does the UK Press. In order to reopen this cold case, Europol offers its assistance. Detective Chief Inspector Michael Lambert – now retired from Thames Valley Police – is sent to Rimini as a Europol Liaison Officer, in order to assist the Italian police in re-opening their investigation.

His quest takes him from Rimini to Greece and the River Evros, where illegal migrants frequently cross over from Turkey. Following this recognised people smuggling route, his investigations also take him to Bulgaria, where he discovers a crooked adoption racket. Finding some promising leads to the whereabouts of the little English girl, he is able to establish if she is alive or dead.

In Rimini, Michael Lambert also discovers disquieting information about his late father’s wartime exploits in Italy and once more, finds new romance in his life.

ABDUCTION - An Angel Over Rimini - by Patrick Brigham

Born in Berkshire England to an old Reading family, having attended an English Public School and a stint at college, the author Patrick Brigham went into real estate. After the economic crash of 1989 he licked his wounds, wrote two books and in 1993 decided to finally abandon London, the UK's casino economy and he moved to Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. As the Editor in Chief of the first English Language news magazine in Sofia - between 1995 and 2000 - and as a journalist, he witnessed the political changes in this once hard core communist country and personally knew most of the political players, including the old Communist Dictator Todor Zhivkov and his successors, Zhelev and Stoyanov.

The natural home of political intrigue, Bolshevism and the conspiracy theory, Bulgaria proved to be quite a challenge, but for many of its citizens the transition was also very painful. Despite this, Patrick Brigham personally managed to survive these political changes and now lives peacefully in Northern Greece, writing mystery novels. A writer for many years, he has recently written four good crime fiction books including, Herodotus – The Gnome of Sofia, Judas Goat – The Kennet Narrow Boat Mystery, Abduction – An Angel over Rimini, and The Dance of Dimitrios. He has also published a play called Judicial Review.

Confirming that the truth is very often stranger than fiction, Eastern Europe has proved to be Patrick Brigham’s inspiration for writing good mystery books. Much of his writing has been influenced by 20 years spent in the Balkans and the plethora of characters in his writing, are redolent of many past communist political intrigues in Bulgaria. But he also goes back to his English roots in his play, which is about money, greed and redemption.


Thomas Arvanitis.

I believe this is the 3rd book that Patrick Brigham has written featuring Michael Lambert, a Reading police officer now working for Europol. Despite not having read the previous ones, I had no trouble following the story and characters in this one.
There are many things to like in this police thriller that spans many European countries:
First of all, the author spends the first 3 chapters focusing on his main character and his past, his motivations, his problems and hopes, all of which serve to make us understand him, like him and root for him.
Secondly, the main plot about a little English girl's disappearance during her family's holiday in Rimini, Italy is both interesting and frighteningly realistic. Perhaps inspired by the real disappearance of little Madeleine McCann in Portugal a few years ago, it is really something one might see in today's headlines.
Thirdly, Lambert's police work and reasoning are down to earth and make sense, adding to the realism of the story.
Last, but certainly not least, the descriptions of the places, people, and especially the (corrupt) authorities in Italy, Greece, and Bulgaria are perfectly accurate and spot on, as is expected since Mr Brigham has lived and worked in the Balkans for many years.
All in all, I would definitely read more of Mr Brigham's books.

Madi Preda.

In this book Patrick Brigham reveals the forms of human trafficking from the poorest to richest countries. The Chief Inspector Lambert is working now for Europol after he gave up his job at Thames Valley Police .Being through a difficult divorce he is living now in France and his first mission is to investigate an abduction case of a little British girl from a campsite in North of Italy-Rimini, a good opportunity for him to think and find out more about his father who was there during the WWII.
The case of abduction leads to some terrifying facts about human trafficking and foreign migrants in North of Greece at the border with Turkey. Not so easy reading at times, these are facts not very often included in statistics and although the book is a work of fiction, the plagues revealed in the book are real in the modern society. Will Lambert find the little girl alive or not?

James Loftus.

It gives me great pleasure to review Abduction: An Angel over Rimini by Patrick Brigham, a novelist I greatly admire for his wit, and seemingly effortless style that brings the nuance of life onto the page, creating a very real world. A very visual style! The senses tingle when taken on a journey by Patrick Brigham. I know how hard it is to get descriptions right. No one one does it better than Patrick Brigham.
The subject of the novel a child abduction is handled exceptionally, the police procedurals, the investigation, is all as it seems a constant with Patrick, a joy and expertly done. And like his detective character Detective Chief Inspector Michael Lambert, Patrick, is obviously, decisive, methodical and comprehensive, and highly likeable. I think Detective Lambert is in good hands with this author.
Another thought I had with this book - I am an ex cop - he must of done a lot of research to get so many things right. I felt when reading Abduction that Patrick was relating an investigation he actually carried out. Exceptional, more please Patrick.

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