Fans of Larsson and Nesbø will hope that Dazieri changes his mind and extends the Torre/Caselli series.

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KILL THE KING

Italian mysterian Dazieri concludes a trilogy of dark mayhem with a suitably gruesome close.

If Kill the Father (2017) gave us a would-be paterfamilias with whom only Hannibal Lecter would want to exchange Christmas cards and Kill the Angel (2018) introduced readers to the arcana of Indo-European mythology, this concluding volume is a study in PTSD. And for good reason: Colomba Caselli, the enterprising detective heroine, has had just about all she can stand of mass murder, decapitation, and other hallmarks of her trade, and she’s taken herself to the Italian countryside to rest. It’s quiet—too quiet, since the area is full of little towns “inhabited only by old people who rounded out their pensions by hunting for truffles.” Yet even there trouble has a way of finding Colomba, in this case in the form of an apparently autistic young man she finds wandering about dazed, covered in blood that is not his own. The lad, she learns, “is perfectly capable of understanding and formulating intent,” which makes him a fine candidate for imprisonment. It would be nice if Dante Torre, Colomba’s partner in crime-solving, were on hand to figure out what’s happened in the quaint confines of Montenigro, but he’s been imprisoned in a “six-story building the size of a public housing block without a single fucking window on the upper floors”—and on the outskirts of Chernobyl, no less. This is no cozy English countryside whodunit: The doings that are afoot are nasty and exceedingly lethal, with a mad truck driver, for instance, mowing down rows of priests and assorted other victims until the festivities come to an end in a huge explosion “slicing like an incandescent scythe through the crowd of running people.” That’s just a taste of the ugliness that people wage on one another throughout the book, which is decidedly not for sensitive souls.

Fans of Larsson and Nesbø will hope that Dazieri changes his mind and extends the Torre/Caselli series.

Pub Date: May 19, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5011-7472-8

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: March 15, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2020

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This is fast-paced, nonstop fun. Cussler fans will gobble it up.

JOURNEY OF THE PHARAOHS

Rumors of lost Egyptian treasure spark high adventure in this 17th in the NUMA series featuring oceanographer Kurt Austin and his crew (Sea of Greed, 2018, etc.).

Over 3,000 years ago, grave robbers sail away with loot from a pharaoh’s tomb. In 1927, Jake Melbourne and his plane disappear in his attempt at a trans-Atlantic flight. In the present day, arms merchants known as the Bloodstone Group have taken to stealing antiquities. They are looking for a “treasure both vast and glorious” that hieroglyphics say was shipped down the Nile and out of Egypt, perhaps even west across the Atlantic. (Holy scurvy! That must’ve been a lot of hard rowing!) The criminals are known to MI5 as “very dangerous people" and "merchants selling death.” Perfectly willing to kill everyone in their way, they are aided by mechanical crows and Fydor and Xandra, nasty sibling assassins jointly called the Toymaker. Such are the foes faced by Austin and his team from the National Underwater and Marine Agency. Of course, Austin has no interest in profit; he will gladly leave the ancient riches wherever they are. Action arrives early and often, and the failed pre-Lindbergh flight fits in neatly. Cussler and Brown concoct a nifty plot with disparate, sometimes over-the-top twists that will make even hardcore adventure fans say “Wow!” Expect claustrophobic gunfights, aerial combat, a life-threatening flood, messages from the dead, coffins of gold—and a vintage classic car, because why not? “We’re going to steal the greatest deposit of Egyptian treasure the world has ever known,” brags the evil mastermind. But he’ll have to climb over the series hero’s dead body first, which—no plot spoiler here—ain’t gonna happen.

This is fast-paced, nonstop fun. Cussler fans will gobble it up.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-08308-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2020

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One protest from an outraged innocent says it all: “This is America. This is Wyoming.”

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LONG RANGE

Once again, Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett gets mixed up in a killing whose principal suspect is his old friend Nate Romanowski, whose attempts to live off the grid keep breaking down in a series of felony charges.

If Judge Hewitt hadn’t bent over to pick up a spoon that had fallen from his dinner table, the sniper set up nearly a mile from his house in the gated community of the Eagle Mountain Club would have ended his life. As it was, the victim was Sue Hewitt, leaving the judge alive and free to rail and threaten anyone he suspected of the shooting. Incoming Twelve Sleep County Sheriff Brendan Kapelow’s interest in using the case to promote his political ambitions and the judge’s inability to see further than his nose make them the perfect targets for a frame-up of Nate, who just wants to be left alone in the middle of nowhere to train his falcons and help his bride, Liv Brannon, raise their baby, Kestrel. Nor are the sniper, the sheriff, and the judge Nate’s only enemies. Orlando Panfile has been sent to Wyoming by the Sinaloan drug cartel to avenge the deaths of the four assassins whose careers Nate and Joe ended last time out (Wolf Pack, 2019). So it’s up to Joe, with some timely data from his librarian wife, Marybeth, to hire a lawyer for Nate, make sure he doesn’t bust out of jail before his trial, identify the real sniper, who continues to take an active role in the proceedings, and somehow protect him from a killer who regards Nate’s arrest as an unwelcome complication. That’s quite a tall order for someone who can’t shoot straight, who keeps wrecking his state-issued vehicles, and whose appalling mother-in-law, Missy Vankeuren Hand, has returned from her latest European jaunt to suck up all the oxygen in Twelve Sleep County to hustle some illegal drugs for her cancer-stricken sixth husband. But fans of this outstanding series will know better than to place their money against Joe.

One protest from an outraged innocent says it all: “This is America. This is Wyoming.”

Pub Date: March 3, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-525-53823-3

Page Count: 368

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2020

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