From Publishers Weekly
Bestseller Sandford opts for a contemplative procedural rather than a high-octane nail-biter for his 17th novel to feature Minneapolis detective Lucas Davenport (after 2005's Broken Prey
). The brave and intelligent Davenport, one of contemporary crime fiction's more congenial sleuths, is working a politically sensitive case—state senator Burt Kline is on the edge of being arrested for having sex with a minor—when he's called in to investigate the beating death of wealthy widow Constance Bucher and her maid. Bucher lived in a mansion stuffed with antiques, though it's unclear if robbery was the motive for the murders. Several run-of-the-mill suspects are dealt with before the reader learns the identity of the two killers, who continue to murder a string of folks all variously connected to the Bucher slaying. Eventually, the Bucher and Kline cases come together in an unexpected way. Interesting and unusual supporting characters, good and bad guys alike, enhance an intriguing puzzle. (May)
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Constance Bucher is in her eighties, wealthy, and lives in a lovely Twin Cities home brimming with antiques. Bucher and her maid slip into past tense when intruders bludgeon them to death and trash the house. The victim's social standing is enough for the governor to assign his top investigator, Lucas Davenport, to investigate. The easy solution would be to label the crime a junkie killing, but when a painting stored in the attic (and worth a cool half-million) turns up missing, it's clear that this was no random attack. Aided by an imaginative intern, Davenport uncovers a series of similar crimes across the Midwest in which the victims were all old, wealthy art collectors. Concurrently, Davenport is working on a politically sensitive case in which a local politician has been accused of having sexual relations with a 15-year-old. And maybe her mother. Or maybe they're angling for a civil payday as opposed to criminal justice. The latest in the Prey
series is more thriller than mystery; the villains are revealed early, and the plot is advanced through the bad guys' point of view. Davenport unravels their scheme by pulling on a small thread, and it's his immersion into the murky world of art, antiques, museums, and donors that gives this one its cachet. As always for Sandford, entertaining and intelligent reading. Wes LukowskyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved