Thursday, March 18, 2010

Review - The Circle by Peter Lovesey

Author: Peter Lovesey
Publisher:SoHo Press
ISBN: 0-7862-8099-9
British Mystery

Bob Naylor loves to write limericks and jingles. He is a widow with a teenage daughter who convinces him to join a writer's circle. He's afraid that he won't fit into the circle, but against his better judgment attends a meeting. First he finds that the circle members come from all walks of the class system. They write fantasy, romance, gardening, even subjects like family history and serial killer books. A couple of them don't write anything at all one just draws and the other is there he likes to listen to what others in the group have to say about their work.
A few weeks before Bob joins the group a publisher Edgar Blacker was a guest speaker at the meeting. Since that time Edgar Blacker died in his bed and the police think it's arson what's more interesting is the chairman of the group is arrested for murder. Nobody believe Maurice McDade murdered anyone and the group wants to do something to help free Maurice. Soon Bob is caught up in the chatter of who murdered Edgar Blacker and what's gets talked into helping with a side investigation away from the current one by the police.
What happens next is one by one members of the circle are murdered. Bob does a favor for the treasurer of the group Miss. Snow who is elderly the favor almost costs Bob his life.
One by one the remaining members of the group all have something to hide and even though Bob is in over his head he has to finish his promise to find out what these murders are all about and before it's too late and another murder happens he follows the clues, talks to the families, friends and members and soon a deadly and dangerous picture emerges.
THE CIRCLE by Peter Lovesey is well written, cleverly plotted and chalk full of mystery and suspense. The pen may be mightier than the sword but only if you live to write the story.
Pamela James

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