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US Books Received- 07/2017  Next Month / Last Month
In order to provide timely reviews, we prefer to receive Advance Reader Copies of books when possible. Send books to Gayle Surrette / Editor c/o Gumshoe 16440 Baden Westwood Road Brandywine, MD 20613

Berkley

A Panicked Premonition (Psychic Eye) by Victoria Laurie (Berkley 04 July 2017 / $25.00) - Product Description: In Victoria Laurie's newest Psychic Eye mystery, Abby Cooper has one rule to follow: don't panic!

Professional psychic and FBI consultant Abby Cooper has used her inner visions to get her out of many a scraped--and solve many a crime—but she's about to face a murder scene that will put all her powers to the test. Abby's husband Dutch has a side business providing security and building panic rooms for wealthy clients. One morning, one of Dutch's partners, Dave, goes missing on his way to meet a client. Abby's intuition tells her something terrible has happened to him.

Then two of Dutch's clients are found brutally murdered...inside their brand new panic room, and most of the evidence points to Dave as the killer.  With the authorities racing to find and arrest him, Abby's got to use all her intuitive prowess to get to Dave first, discover the real killer, and save her husband's business. This is one case where Abby is positive there's far more to this mystery than meets her inner eye.

(Source: Berkley)

Addressed to Kill (Postmistress Mystery) by Jean Flowers (Berkley 25 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: Third in the Postmistress Mystery series by Jean Flowers, following Death Takes Priority and Cancelled by Murder.

Love is in the air for postmaster Cassie Miller and the residents of North Ashcot, Massachusetts. Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and the town is gearing up for a special dinner dance at the senior center. With the local musical group performing at the dance displaced from their regular practice location, Cassie is all too happy to host them during off-hours at the post office.

But not everything is coming up roses. When one of the musicians, Dennis Somerville, is found shot in his home, rumors swirl over who might have wanted him dead. Cassie must determine if there is a link between a string of recent break-ins and Dennis's murder before another victim winds up with more than a broken heart.

(Source: Berkley)

Bring Her Home by David Bell (Berkley 11 July 2017 / $16.00) - Product Description: Just a year and a half after the tragic death of his wife, Bill Price's fifteen-year-old daughter, Summer, and her best friend, Haley, disappear. Days later, the girls are found in a city park. Haley is dead at the scene, while Summer is left beaten beyond recognition and clinging to life.

As Bill holds vigil over Summer's bandaged body, the only sound the unconscious girl can make is one cryptic and chilling word: No. And the more time Bill spends with Summer, the more he wonders what happened to her. Or if the injured girl in the hospital bed is really his daughter at all.

When troubling new questions about Summer's life surface, Bill is not prepared for the aftershocks. He'll soon discover that both the living and the dead have secrets. And that searching for the truth will tear open old wounds that pierce straight to the heart of his family. (Readers Guide included.)

(Source: Berkley)

Knit Your Own Murder (Needlecraft) by Monica Ferris (Berkley 04 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: In the Needlecraft Mysteries, Betsy Devonshire has her hands tied between running her needlework shop and turning her sharp eye for deduction to solving crimes.

The Monday Bunch and other local knitters are participating in a fund-raising auction to save a community center, creating a growing pile of stuffed animals and toys right in front of the auctioneers as the audience bids. Among those contributing the most knitted goods is temperamental businesswoman Maddy Hanover--who keels over halfway through the event.

After she is pronounced DOA, an autopsy reveals that Maddy had been poisoned. But how? And by whom? One of the prime suspects is her ruthless business rival Joe Mickels, who lost a bitterly contested property bid to Maddy.

When Mickels pleads his innocence to Betsy, she reluctantly believes him. But if Betsy is going to uncover the real murderer's identity, she must first untangle the knots Maddy made in her relationships throughout her life.

(Source: Berkley)

Lions and Tigers and Murder, Oh My (Devereaux's Dime Store) by Denise Swanson (Berkley 04 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: From the author of Between a Book and a Hard Place comes the latest Devereaux's Dime Store Mystery--and it packs a bite.

Opening up a dime store in her hometown of Shadow Bend, Missouri, Devereaux "Dev" Sinclair thought she'd left the wilds of city life behind her. But she's about to discover that even rural life can be beastly.

Handsome private investigator Jake Del Vecchio has rented the office space on the second floor above Devereaux's dime store, and Dev now finds herself embroiled in his first case, which involves Gabriella Winston, the missing wife of wealthy philanthropist Elliot Winston.

Elliot is determined to open a wildlife park on the edge of town but is facing all sorts of angry opposition—including Gabriella. After the Winstons have a bitter fight, Gabriella disappears, and their house is ransacked. The authorities are quick to claim Elliot killed his wife, but Dev's not so sure. One thing is certain: Claws are out in Shadow Bend.

(Source: Berkley)

Muffin to Fear (Merry Muffin) by Victoria Hamilton (Berkley 25 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: In the latest from the author of Much Ado About Muffin, newlywed baker Merry Wynter has some unwanted guests looking for ghosts at Wynter Castle.

While Merry is distracted by her quickly planned marriage to Virgil Grace and a blissful honeymoon in New York, her friend Pish invites the ghost-hunting crew from the TV show Haunt Hunt to investigate Merry's home, Wynter Castle. Merry soon discovers that not only is the crew out of sync, there are so many feuds and squabbles, it's a miracle they get a show produced at all.

It all goes from bad to worse when the show's psychics claim to have contact with people murdered on Merry's property. When two cast members are found dead, Merry and Virgil must figure out who's picking off the Haunt Hunt team before their hard-earned happily ever after is cut short. (Includes recipes.)

(Source: Berkley)

Sowed to Death (Farmer's Daughter) by Peg Cochran (Berkley 04 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: In the latest Farmer's Daughter Mystery from the author of No Farm, No Foul, farm owner and blogger Shelby McDonald must field another murder mystery.

The county fair is the highlight of the year for the small town of Lovett, Michigan--especially for food-and-lifestyle blogger Shelby McDonald, who writes as the Farmer's Daughter. She's submitting jams and jellies she's created from the produce she grows at Love Blossom Farm in hopes of harvesting a blue ribbon.

But the townspeople get more than just the excitement of hayrides, tractor pulls, and cotton candy when Shelby's neighbor and volunteer fireman, Jake Taylor, extricates the body of Zeke Barnstable instead of a dummy during a demonstration of the Jaws of Life. The fact that Jake and Zeke were known to be at odds plants suspicion in the minds of the police. As evidence against Jake grows, Shelby knows she has to plow through the clues to weed out the true killer and save her friend. (Includes recipes.)

(Source: Berkley)

Wrong Side of the Paw (Bookmobile Cat Mystery #6) by Laurie Cass (Berkley 25 July 2017 / $7.99) - Product Description: As Laurie Cass continues the Bookmobile Cat mystery series, librarian Minnie Hamilton is happy to take her bookmobile for a spin with her rescue cat, Eddie--but her tenacious tabby always seems to find trouble.

As the bookmobile rolls along the hills of Chilson, Michigan, Minnie and Eddie spread good cheer and good reads. But when her faithful feline finds his way into the middle of a murder, Minnie is there, like any good librarian, to check it out.

Eddie turns a routine bookmobile stop into anything but when he makes a quick escape and hops into a pickup truck ... with a dead body in the flatbed. The friendly local lawyer who was driving the pickup falls under suspicion. But Minnie and Eddie think there's more to this case than meets the eye, and the dynamic duo sets out to leave no page unturned.

(Source: Berkley)

Delacorte Press

Little Monsters by Kara Thomas (Delacorte Press 25 July 2017 / $17.99 / $10.99) - Book Description: Kacey is the new girl in Broken Falls. When she moved in with her father, she stepped into a brand-new life. A life with a stepbrother, a stepmother, and strangest of all, an adoring younger half sister.

Kacey's new life is eerily charming compared with the wild highs and lows of the old one she lived with her volatile mother. And everyone is so nice in Broken Falls--she's even been welcomed into a tight new circle of friends. Bailey and Jade invite her to do everything with them.

Which is why it's so odd when they start acting distant. And when they don't invite her to the biggest party of the year, it doesn't exactly feel like an accident.

But Kacey will never be able to ask, because Bailey never makes it home from that party. Suddenly, Broken Falls doesn't seem so welcoming after all--especially once everyone starts looking to the new girl for answers.

Kacey is about to learn some very important lessons: Sometimes appearances can be deceiving. Sometimes when you’re the new girl, you shouldn’t trust anyone.

Forge Books

Assassin's Code (David Slaton) by Ward Larsen (Forge Books 27 July 2017 / $25.99 / $12.99) - Book Description: Former assassin David Slaton discovers a cryptic message: on a memory stick, a photograph of the man who will soon assume command of DGSI, France's elite counterterrorism force. With that country reeling under a wave of ISIS attacks, Zavier Baland will be trusted to make the Republic safe again. The problem--Slaton has seen Baland's face before. He is Ali Samir, a terrorist Slaton is certain he killed fifteen years earlier. Unable to reconcile this frightening disconnect, he attempts to raise the alarm.

Thousands of miles away, the chief information officer of ISIS tries to keep networks running amid crumbling infrastructure. With the caliphate's very survival at stake, the leadership commits to a last-ditch gambit: France must be attacked on a massive scale, forcing the West into the battle of the Apocalypse.

Shoreline (Det. Nora Khalil) by Carolyn Baugh (Forge Books 11 July 2017 / $27.99 / $14.99) - Product Description: Shoreline is the second suspense novel featuring FBI agent Nora Khalil by Carolyn Baugh, author of Quicksand and The View from Garden City.

Officer Nora Khalil is a strong independent woman used to navigating different terrains. As an American-born Muslim, she loves her country and tries to honor the traditions of her people, but feels that she must constantly confront those who think she is alien.

Assigned to the FBI office in Erie, Pennsylvania, she tries to fit into small-town America after a childhood growing up in the bustle of Philly's dark streets. A series of horrific acts of violence are committed by a well-connected group of domestic terrorists eager to spark a national revolution. The town erupts in chaos and the eyes of the nation are on these events. In turn, this heats up the debate about the fabric of our nation ... and how those who feel disenfranchised by our new multiculturalism are determined to take back their birthright and, in their own words, make our nation great again.

Will Nora and her team be able to defuse the situation before the carnage goes national?
At the Publisher's request, the digital title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

GnD Publishing

The Prom Dress Killer (Det. Al Warner) by George A. Bernstein (GnD Publishing 18 July 2017 / $14.95) - Book Description: A psychopathic killer lurks in Miami's shadows, snatching and murdering young auburn-haired women. Strangely, they are killed without trauma and left clad in frilly prom-style dresses. Miami's crack homicide detective, Al Warner, is on the case, but the killer has left few clues. Why were these girls taken and then executed? Was he intent on killing redheads, or was there some other connection? And why were their bodies so carefully arranged in peaceful repose, wearing prom dresses? Warner's hunt for this clever psycho is stymied by a lack of clues as he desperately searches for the latest victim. The suspense ramps up when the murderer finally makes one tiny error. As Warner and the FBI doggedly zero in on their fleeing prey and his newest captive, the action escalates. Unlikely players are drawn into a tense, deadly game. As the stunning climax plays out, Warner is trapped in a classic Catch-22. In order to snare this lethal psycho, he must make a decision that may haunt him forever.

(Source: GnD Publishing)

Minotaur Books

A Terrible Beauty (Lady Emily) by Tasha Alexander (Minotaur Books 11 July 2017 / $15.99) - Product Description: On a quest to distract her lifelong friend Jeremy from his recent heartbreak, Lady Emily organizes a holiday in Greece. As a lover of all things Greek, she quickly finds herself occupied with tours of ancient ruins, lively debates with Margaret, a devoted Latinist, and slightly more scandalous endeavors with her dashing husband, Colin Hargreaves. But the pleasantries are brought to an abrupt halt when a man long believed dead greets the party at their island villa. Lord Philip Ashton, Colin's childhood best friend and Emily's first husband, has returned. But can Philip really be who he claims, even if he has the scars and stories to prove it? Where has he been for all this time? And will his undying love for Emily drive him to claim what's his?

Intrigue mounts as Philip reveals that he has been plagued for the past few years by an illegal antiques trader who believes he is in possession of a piece of Achilles' helmet, a priceless relic that was stolen from him moments after he unearthed it on an archaeological dig. Emily must employ all of her cunning and expertise to thwart thieves who threaten not only her own safety, but that of those precious artifacts she holds so dear. A trail of overheard conversations, murderous assailants, and dead bodies leads her on a chase to uncover more than one buried truth.

(see review)

Another Man's Ground (Sheriff Hank Worth) by Claire Booth (Minotaur Books 11 July 2017 / $25.99 / $12.99) - Product Description: It starts out as an interesting little theft case. Branson, Missouri's new Sheriff Hank Worth is called out to look at stands of trees that have been stripped of their bark, which the property owner had planned to harvest for the booming herbal supplement market. At first, Hank easily balances the demands of the investigation with his fledging political career. He was appointed several months earlier to the vacant sheriff position, but he needs to win the fast-approaching election in order to keep his job. He thinks the campaign will go well, as long as he's able to keep secret the fact that a group of undocumented immigrants--hired to cut down the stripped trees--have fled into the forest and he's deliberately not looking for them.

But then the discovery of a murder victim deep in the Ozark backwoods sets him in the middle of a generations-old feud that explodes into danger not only for him, but also for the immigrants, his deputies, and his family. He must rush to find a murderer before election day, and protect the vulnerable in Branson County, where politicking is hell and trespassing can get you killed.

Let the Dead Speak (Maeve Kerrigan) by Jane Casey (Minotaur Books 25 July 2017 / $27.99 / $14.99) - Product Description: When eighteen-year-old Chloe Emery returns to her West London home she finds her mother missing, the house covered in blood. Everything points to murder, except for one thing: there's no sign of the body.

London detective Maeve Kerrigan and the homicide team turn their attention to the neighbours. The ultra-religious Norrises are acting suspiciously; their teenage daughter and Chloe Emery definitely have something to hide. Then there's William Turner, once accused of stabbing a schoolmate and the neighborhood's favorite criminal. Is he merely a scapegoat, or is there more behind the charismatic façade?

As a body fails to materialize, Maeve must piece together a patchwork of testimonies and accusations. Who is lying, and who is not? And soon Maeve starts to realize that not only will the answer lead to Kate Emery, but more lives may hang in the balance.

Penance of the Damned (Ancient Ireland) by Peter Tremayne (Minotaur Books 25 July 2017 / $27.99) - Product Description: Ireland, AD 671. King Colgú of Cashel is shocked to learn that his loyal Chief Bishop and advisor has been murdered in the old enemy fortress of the Uí Fidgente. When word reaches Cashel that the culprit will be executed under new law, a larger conflict looms.

Dispatched to investigate, Fidelma and her companion Eadulf discover that the man facing punishment is Gormán--commander of the King's bodyguard. But Fidelma cannot believe Gormán would carry out such an act--and yet he was found locked in a chamber with the body, weapon in hand. The evidence is stacked against him.

If they are to exonerate Gormán and keep the peace between the kingdoms, Fidelma and Eadulf must find the true culprit. As the threat of war looms, the date of execution drawers ever closer.

Sorrow Road (Bell Elkins) by Julia Keller (Minotaur Books 11 July 2017 / $15.99) - Product Description: In 1944, three young men from a small town in West Virginia are among the American forces participating in D-Day, changing the fortunes of the war with one bold stroke. How is that moment aboard a Navy ship as it barrels toward the Normandy shore related to the death of an old man in an Appalachian nursing home seventy-two years later?

Bell Elkins, prosecuting attorney in Acker's Gap, West Virginia, is asked by an old acquaintance to look into the death of her beloved father in an Alzheimer's care facility. Did he die of natural causes--or was something more sinister to blame? And that's not the only issue with which Bell is grappling: Her daughter Carla has moved back home. But something's not right. Carla is desperately hiding a secret.

Once again, past and present, good and evil, and revenge and forgiveness clash in a riveting story set in the shattered landscape of Acker's Gap, where the skies can seem dark even at high noon, and the mountains lean close to hear the whispered lament of the people trapped in their shadow.

(Source: Minotaur Books)

The Third Nero (Flavia Albia) by Lindsey Davis (Minotaur Books 11 July 2017 / $26.99) - Product Description: In 90 A.D., following the Saturninus revolt in Germany, the Emperor Domitian has become more paranoid about traitors and dissenters around him. This leads to several senators and even provincial governors facing charges and being executed for supposed crimes of conspiracy and insulting the emperor. Wanting to root out all the supports of Saturninus from the Senate, one of Domitian's men offers to hire Flavia Alba to do some intelligence work.

Flavia Alba, daughter and chip off the old block of Marcus Didius Falco, would rather avoid any and all court intrigue, thank you very much. But she's in a bit of a bind. Her wedding is fast approaching, her fiancé is still recovering--slowly--from being hit by a lightning bolt, and she's the sole support of their household. So with more than a few reservations, she agrees to investigate.

Adding to the confusion is yet another Nero pretender has shown up in Parthia and is trying to rally support for his claim for the throne. With intrigue upon intrigue swirling around the capital city, it's up to Albia to uncover what is--and isn't--the real threat.

MIRA

The Ultimatum (The Guardian #1) by Karen Robards (MIRA 01 July 2017 / $26.99) - Product Description: Growing up, Bianca St. Ives knew she was different from all her friends. Instead of playing hopscotch or combing her dolls' hair, she studied martial arts with sensei masters and dismantled explosives with special-ops retirees. Her father prepped her well to carry on the family business. Now a striking beauty with fierce skills, the prodigy has surpassed the master.

She's known as the Guardian. Running a multinational firm with her father, she makes a living swindling con men out of money they stole--and she's damn good at it. She does things on her own terms. But her latest gig had a little hiccup--if you count two hundred million dollars and top secret government documents going missing as little. Her father also died on the mission. The thing is, the US government doesn't believe he's really dead. They'll stop at nothing to capture Richard St. Ives, a high-value target and someone who has been on most-wanted lists all over the world for over two decades, and they mean to use Bianca as bait. With only a fellow criminal for backup and her life on the line, it's up to Bianca to uncover the terrifying truth behind what really happened ... and set it right, before it's too late.

(Source: MIRA)

Park Row Books

Every Last Lie by Mary Kubica (Park Row Books 01 July 2017 / ) - Product Description: The author of The Good Girl Mary Kubica is back with another exhilarating thriller as a widow's pursuit of the truth leads her to the darkest corners of the psyche.

Clara Solberg's world shatters when her husband and their four-year-old daughter are in a car crash, killing Nick while Maisie is remarkably unharmed. The crash is ruled an accident…until the coming days, when Maisie starts having night terrors that make Clara question what really happened on that fateful afternoon.

Tormented by grief and her obsession that Nick's death was far more than just an accident, Clara is plunged into a desperate hunt for the truth. Who would have wanted Nick dead? And, more important, why? Clara will stop at nothing to find out—and the truth is only the beginning of this twisted tale of secrets and deceit.

Told in the alternating perspectives of Clara's investigation and Nick's last months leading up to the crash, master of suspense Mary Kubica weaves her most chilling thriller to date--one that explores the dark recesses of a mind plagued by grief and shows that some secrets might be better left buried.

(Source: Park Row Books)

Poisoned Pen Press

Ruined Stones by Eric Reed (Poisoned Pen Press 04 July 2017 / $15.95 / $9.99) - Product Description: Surviving the 1941 Blitz and the predator in her small Shropshire village, policeman's daughter Grace Baxter moves to Newcastle-on-Tyne. Situated on the northern bank of the River Tyne, the ancient northeast city developed around the Roman settlement Pons Aelius-named for the Emperor Hadrian who built the famous wall right at the edge of the then civilized world. No matter its later history as a wool trade, then coal mining center, and the ship building that makes it a German bombing target, Newcastle's Roman past won't be ignored.

Grace is eager to explore city life. And she's turned professional with an official job in the city's constabulary. The war means women can find work, even if most men in the job discount if not actively resent her.

Grace's arrival coincides with the discovery of the body of a young woman, curiously difficult to identify, at the scanty ruins of a Roman temple situated across from a church. The bone-numbing cold, the fogs, and the Blitz, not to mention to peculiar behavior of some of the citizens and the hostility directed towards a woman in man's work, test Grace's resolve to be an effective officer. There are many potential leads, and much suspicious behavior to sort through. What role do ancient rituals play in the murder and what follows? What current misbehavior or crimes is someone, or someones, desperate to cover up? The investigation, carried out through fog and blackout and fear as well as the hostility of her colleagues, tests Grace's resolve to be an effective officer. Will it also endanger her life?

(Source: Poisoned Pen Press)

Seventh Street Books

Betrayal at Iga (Hiro Hattori/Shinobi) by Susan Spann (Seventh Street Books 11 July 2017 / $15.95) - Product Description: Autumn, 1565: After fleeing Kyoto, master ninja Hiro Hattori and Portuguese Jesuit Father Mateo take refuge with Hiro's ninja clan in the mountains of Iga province. But when an ambassador from the rival Koga clan is murdered during peace negotiations, Hiro and Father Mateo must find the killer in time to prevent a war between the ninja clans.

With every suspect a trained assassin, and the evidence incriminating not only Hiro's commander, the infamous ninja Hattori Hanzō, but also Hiro's mother and his former lover, the detectives must struggle to find the truth in a village where deceit is a cultivated art. As tensions rise, the killer strikes again, and Hiro finds himself forced to choose between his family and his honor.

(see review)

Soho Crime

Death on Delos (Athenian Mystery) by Gary Corby (Soho Crime 11 July 2017 / $26.95) - Product Description: Greece, 545 BC: It is illegal to die on the sacred isle of Delos. It's also illegal to give birth there. Yet when murder is committed, the only available detective to solve the crime is the priestess Diotima, and she is heavily pregnant.

Delos is the holy birthplace of the divine twins Apollo and Artemis, and it is an island in crisis. Not only has murder tainted the holy sanctuary, but there are about a thousand Athenian troops on the island. The army is led by the statesman Pericles and has come to take away the treasury of the Delian League, the defense fund of the Greeks against the Persian Empire. The holy people are in uproar. The Athenians are exasperated. The High Priest of the Delian Apollo is not amused. To cap it off, Diotima's husband and fellow detective, Nicolaos, is implicated in dodgy dealings that link him to the murder.

Somehow Diotima must find the killer, calm the island, and ... oh, yes ... have a baby.

(see review)

Thomas & Mercer

AFTERLIFE by Marcus Sakey (Thomas & Mercer 18 July 2017 / $24.95) - Product Description: The last thing FBI agent Will Brody remembers is the explosion--a thousand shards of glass surfing a lethal shock wave. He wakes without a scratch. The building is in ruins. His team is gone. Outside, Chicago is dark. Cars lie abandoned. No planes cross the sky. He's relieved to spot other people--until he sees they're carrying machetes. Welcome to the afterlife.

Claire McCoy stands over the body of Will Brody. As head of an FBI task force, she hasn't had a decent night's sleep in weeks. A terrorist has claimed eighteen lives and thrown the nation into panic. Against this horror, something reckless and beautiful happened. She fell in love ... with Will Brody.

But the line between life and death is narrower than any of us suspect--and all that matters to Will and Claire is getting back to each other.

From the author of the Brilliance Trilogy comes a mind-bending thriller that explores our most haunting and fundamental question: What if death is just the beginning?

(Source: Thomas & Mercer)

Stillhouse Lake by Rachel Caine (Thomas & Mercer 01 July 2017 / ) - Product Description: Gina Royal is the definition of average--a shy Midwestern housewife with a happy marriage and two adorable children. But when a car accident reveals her husband's secret life as a serial killer, she must remake herself as Gwen Proctor--the ultimate warrior mom.

With her ex now in prison, Gwen has finally found refuge in a new home on remote Stillhouse Lake. Though still the target of stalkers and Internet trolls who think she had something to do with her husband's crimes, Gwen dares to think her kids can finally grow up in peace.

But just when she's starting to feel at ease in her new identity, a body turns up in the lake--and threatening letters start arriving from an all-too-familiar address. Gwen Proctor must keep friends close and enemies at bay to avoid being exposed--or watch her kids fall victim to a killer who takes pleasure in tormenting her. One thing is certain: she's learned how to fight evil. And she'll never stop.

(Source: Thomas & Mercer)

William Morrow

The Painted Queen by Elizabeth Peters and Joan Hess (William Morrow 25 July 2017 / ) - Product Description: Egypt, 1912. Amelia Peabody and her dashing archeologist husband, Radcliffe Emerson, are once again in danger as they search for a priceless, stolen bust of legendary Queen Nefertiti and Amelia finds herself the target of assassins in this long-awaited, eagerly anticipated final installment of Elizabeth Peters' bestselling, beloved mystery series.

Arriving in Cairo for another thrilling excavation season, Amelia is relaxing in a well-earned bubble bath in her elegant hotel suite in Cairo, when a man with knife protruding from his back staggers into the bath chamber and utters a single word--"Murder"--before collapsing on the tiled floor, dead. Among the few possessions he carried was a sheet of paper with Amelia's name and room number, and a curious piece of pasteboard the size of a calling card bearing one word: "Judas". Most peculiarly, the stranger was wearing a gold-rimmed monocle in his left eye.

It quickly becomes apparent that someone saved Amelia from a would-be assassin--someone who is keeping a careful eye on the intrepid Englishwoman. Discovering a terse note clearly meant for Emerson--Where were you?"--pushed under their door, there can be only one answer: the brilliant master of disguise, Sethos.

But neither assassins nor the Genius of Crime will deter Amelia as she and Emerson head to the excavation site at Amarna, where they will witness the discovery of one of the most precious Egyptian artifacts: the iconic Nefertiti bust. In 1345 B.C. the sculptor Thutmose crafted the piece in tribute to the great beauty of this queen who was also the chief consort of Pharaoh Akhenaten and stepmother to King Tutankhamun.

For Amelia, this excavation season will prove to be unforgettable. Throughout her journey, a parade of men in monocles will die under suspicious circumstances, fascinating new relics will be unearthed, a diabolical mystery will be solved, and a brilliant criminal will offer his final challenge ... and perhaps be unmasked at last.

(see review)

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