From Publishers Weekly
Pulver ( Murder at the War ) here tells the third tale featuring Detective Peter Brichter of the Charter (Ill.) police and his wife Kori. Though titillating and atmospheric, the yarn is less than credible. Still chasing after evidence of organized mobsterssuch as Kori's uncle, who had tried to kill her for her large intheritanceBrichter teams up with crooked Lt. Dahl of Homicide, who is on a murder-arson case. The owner of "Crazy Dave's" appliance store, Dave Wagner, insists he had borrowed thousands he couldn't pay back to a loan shark, Vigotti, who now demands the fire-insurance money. When Vigotti is "eliminated" as a suspect by local capos, Brichter forms a close relationship with elderly arson-expert Captain Isaac (Zak) Kader, and their investigation confirms Crazy Dave's alibi. Tireless deduction produces evidence that clinches the case but creates more victims as a consequence. Threats to Kori, hints of Lt. Dahl's involvement and other talky diversions dilute the plot before the novel closes with a hyped-up car chase.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Mary Monica Pulver is an incidental Hoosier -- Terre Haute, Indiana, had the hospital closest to her parents' home in Marshall, Illinois. She spent the later part of her childhood and early adult life in Wisconsin, graduating from high school in Milwaukee. She was a journalist in the U.S. Navy for six and a half years (two in London), and later attended the University of Wisconsin at Madison. Mary Monica sold her first short story, "Pass the Word," to Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, in 1983, and has since sold more than two dozen short stories to anthologies and magazines, including some in Germany, England, Italy and France. She has appeared in such anthologies as The Mammoth Book of Historical Detectives, The Mammoth Book of Historical Whodunnits, The Mammoth Book of Historical Detectives, Shakespearean Mysteries, Royal Whodunnits, Unholy Orders, Murder Most Crafty, and Silence of the Loons. Her first mystery novel, Murder at the War, appeared from St. Martin's Press in 1987 and was nominated for an Anthony as Best First Novel. The Unforgiving Minutes and Ashes to Ashes followed in 1988; but Original Sin was sold to Walker, who also presented the fifth book, Show Stopper, in May of 1992. Berkley Diamond brought these mysteries out in paperback. They feature detective Peter Brichter - a cop one reviewer said was "a hardboiled sleuth who's somehow landed in a cozy mystery." In 1998 Mary Monica began writing a new series for Berkley featuring amateur needleworking sleuth Betsy Devonshire. Set in Excelsior, Minnesota, Crewel World came out in March and was followed by 18 other titles in the series. These light and traditional novels are written under the pseudonym Monica Ferris, and all have gone to multiple printings – the first one is in its thirteenth printing! Mary Monica has won a place on national and local best-seller lists, including USA Today and the independent mystery bookstore compilation. She is a member of Sisters in Crime (a national organization that promotes women who write mystery fiction), remains a paid speaker on the life of a mystery author.