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A DEATH IN SUMMER


By Benjamin Black

Picador, 2011 ($15.00)

ISBN-13: 978-1-250-00250-1
Kindle eBook: ($9.99)

Reviewed by Sam Waas

Benjamin Black continues his "Quirke" mystery series, set in postwar Dublin. Dr. Quirke is a brilliant and modestly eccentric pathologist who works with his police detective colleague, Inspector Hackett.

A prominent and much feared newspaper publisher Richard Jewell is found dead from an apparently self-inflicted shotgun blast. Both Hackett and Quirke soon realize that the death is a homicide. The investigation leads to several suspects, including the tycoon's wife. The clues are tenuous and interwoven with the extravagant lifestyles of the dead man's family.

American mystery fans are often put off by British-style mysteries, finding them comparatively dry and quaint. But readers on this side of the pond need not fear this novel. DEATH IN SUMMER is a superbly engaging story, intelligent and entertaining. The characters are particularly well drawn, with smart dialogue and good supporting narrative. Although not as action-packed as some popular potboilers, this novel is strongly recommended for all mystery fans.

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