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The Circle : A Hen Mallin Investigation
Praise for The House Sitter: Lovesey loves strong women, cerebral killers and diabolical puzzles the very ingredients that make The House Sitter one of the most cunning mysteries in his Peter Diamond series. Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review The book sings along in great style. Washington Post Book World Elegant and suspenseful. Los Angeles Times An extraordinary mystery. Chicago Tribune This is Lovesey at his best. Publishers Weekly (starred review) An ingenious and complex novel. Booklist (starred review) [A] tour de force. Boston Herald When van driver Bob Naylor, who likes to write jingles, is prodded by his teenage daughter into joining the Chichester Writers' Circle, he scarcely expects to find that, among the anticipated set of literary snobs, he will be rubbing elbows with one or more potential victims of murder by arson. The members come from all walks of life and practice all forms of writing, from torrid romances to household hints, but there seems to be nothing to cause a serial killer to choose his victims from among them. But as the killer strikes again and again, Bob becomes a suspect. In order to free himself from suspicion and save himself from going up in flames, he will have to cooperate with formidable CID Chief Inspector Henrietta Mallin Inspector Peter Diamond's opposite number from The House Sitter. It begins to appear that amongst the potential victims in this circle are one or more murderers. Peter Lovesey is the author of 24 highly praised mysteries and has been awarded The Crime Writers' Association's Gold, Silver and Diamond Daggers, as well as many US honors. He lives in West Sussex, England.From the Hardcover edition.
Inspector Henrietta "Hen" Mallin, an ingenious and acerbic sleuth who played a supporting role in Lovesey's Peter Diamond novel The House Sitter (2003), proves herself fully capable of carrying a story on her own when she takes over a serial murder case connected with the Chichester Writers' Circle, an eccentric amateur writers' group The chair of that group, an author hoping to make a splash with a work on unsolved mysteries, has already been arrested for the arson that killed an unscrupulous publisher who used a speaking invitation before the writers' group to lure his eager audience into a vanity publishing racket. But while the writer's incarcerated, a similar attempt is made on the life of an aspiring poet who's the group's newest member, followed by two more fatal fires. Lovesey's trademark dark humor and playfulness are very much in evidence, as he presents a crafty fair-play puzzle replete with quirky, three-dimensional characters. As with his classic Diamond novel, Bloodhounds, Lovesey employs the device of competing amateur detectives to good effect, increasing suspense and conveying valuable clues through their efforts. While there's every reason to believe Diamond has plenty of life left in him, traditional mystery fans will have no regrets if Lovesey's next few books continue to focus on Mallin.
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May 31, 2006
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