Miss Baker in her banana G-string, Simenon puffing on his pipe—Cleverly brings 1927 into sharp focus, while Sandilands...


Another wily escape for the deadlier of the species.

Uninvited, lovely Alice Conyers joins retired diplomat Sir George Jardine, who recognizes her from Ragtime in Simla (2003), to watch Josephine Baker perform at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées. When she foils his plan to have her arrested by skittering away during the finale, he notices that another old nemesis, Sir Stanley Somerton, has slumped precariously in his seat in the opposite box. When Sir George hastens to him, Somerton topples over, his throat slit. Unfortunately, an usherette assumes that Sir George was the murderer, and he remains in custody until Commander Joe Sandilands of the Yard, in Paris for an Interpol conference, and his Parisian counterpart Inspector Bonnefoye release him. When M. Moulin, the pathologist, suggests that four other murders over the past five years have similar earmarks, Sandilands, Bonnefoye and Sir George’s young cousin Jack Pollack fear for Sir George’s safety. There’ll be more stiletto trauma and several unexpected plot twists before Sandilands—with help from Georges Simenon, a newsman much enthralled by Miss Baker—detects the mastermind behind the flamboyant murder spree and, alas, sees Alice skitter away again.

Miss Baker in her banana G-string, Simenon puffing on his pipe—Cleverly brings 1927 into sharp focus, while Sandilands outwits Parisian bureaucracy, apache wannabes and lovely Alice. If the denouement is a mite implausible, the dash up to it is mighty fine.

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-1-56947-513-3

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Soho

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2008

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One of her best. Poirot, again on vacation, falls foul of a murder on board a Nile river steamer, followed by two successive murders, obviously connected. A sophisticated group, an ingenious plot, clever deduction, swift-paced narrative. A little romance on the side lends glamour. First rate entertainment.

Pub Date: Feb. 8, 1938

ISBN: 0062073559

Page Count: 354

Publisher: Dodd, Mead

Review Posted Online: Sept. 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1938

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Proficient but eminently predictable. Amid all the time shifts and embedded backstories, the most surprising feature is how...

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A convicted killer’s list of five people he wants dead runs the gamut from the wife he’s already had murdered to franchise heroine Ali Reynolds.

Back in the day, women came from all over to consult Santa Clarita fertility specialist Dr. Edward Gilchrist. Many of them left his care happily pregnant, never dreaming that the father of the babies they carried was none other than the physician himself, who donated his own sperm rather than that of the handsome, athletic, disease-free men pictured in his scrapbook. When Alexandra Munsey’s son, Evan, is laid low by the kidney disease he’s inherited from his biological father and she returns to Gilchrist in search of the donor’s medical records, the roof begins to fall in on him. By the time it’s done falling, he’s serving a life sentence in Folsom Prison for commissioning the death of his wife, Dawn, the former nurse and sometime egg donor who’d turned on him. With nothing left to lose, Gilchrist tattoos himself with the initials of five people he blames for his fall: Dawn; Leo Manuel Aurelio, the hit man he’d hired to dispose of her; Kaitlyn Todd, the nurse/receptionist who took Dawn’s place; Alex Munsey, whose search for records upset his apple cart; and Ali Reynolds, the TV reporter who’d helped put Alex in touch with the dozen other women who formed the Progeny Project because their children looked just like hers. No matter that Ali’s been out of both California and the news business for years; Gilchrist and his enablers know that revenge can’t possibly be served too cold. Wonder how far down that list they’ll get before Ali, aided once more by Frigg, the methodical but loose-cannon AI first introduced in Duel to the Death (2018), turns on them?

Proficient but eminently predictable. Amid all the time shifts and embedded backstories, the most surprising feature is how little the boundary-challenged AI, who gets into the case more or less inadvertently, differs from your standard human sidekick with issues.

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-5101-9

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Feb. 19, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2019

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