Some of the Vorkosigan books by Lois McMaster Bujold might
be suitable - I think I'm thinking of Cetaganda
. (Unfortunately I haven't read all the books in the series - started perhaps six months ago, generally have to wait a few weeks for the library hold to reach the top of the list, and then they "upgrade" their database at the end of last year.
I really hate trying to use it now...)
Definately get the whole series, I got in to it when for x-mas my husband bought me Civil Campaign
. The majority of the plots are mysteries, and she doesn't overwhelm you with the tech either. Even if your father doesn't like them, read them anyway. I have loved the whole series, and I'm the sort who tends towards the fanasty more than the sci-fi.