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The Night Detectives: A David Mapstone Mystery (David Mapstone Mysteries) Hardcover – May 7, 2013
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In the Barren Ground
Rookie cop Tana Larsson must track a killer—but can she survive the wild and frozen dark? Learn More
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""The partnership of secretive, pensive Peralta and anguished, impetuous Mapstone (South Phoenix Rules, 2010, etc.) is intriguing, their love lives less so. But NRA aficionados will go nuts.""—Kirkus Reviews
""The journey is thoroughly satisfying.""—Publishers Weekly
Top Customer Reviews
Ex police chief Mike Peralta and former cold case solver David Mapstone have left law enforcement and set up their own private detective agency. Within the span of a few thrilling pages, Felix, a cagey one-legged character pays them $10k to find out why Grace, a high-priced call girl, would have leaped off a high rise balcony. Felix barely gets out of the parking lot before he's gunned down, leaving Mapstone and Peralta with a plethora of unanswered questions.
In this sixth installment of the David Mapstone series, Talton keeps the reader in such an emotional vise that at times you might be afraid to turn the page or start the next chapter for fear of what gut wrenching scene is going to come next.
In addition to a dead first client in his fledgling private-eye business, Mapstone couldn't be at a more dark and pivotal moment in his personal life. A man's house is suppose to be his sanctuary, but Mapstone goes home to a dark and empty dwelling where before he can pull his gin bottle out of the freezer, he must sweep thru the rooms, gun drawn: "I have stopped turning on the lights. I have stopped listening to jazz. I have stopped reading books. The outside world holds no appeal, either."
The Mapstone series has always had multi-dimensional characters, but now they're even more lifelike in their depth. He is one flawed human being. In one chapter you might wish he were in your corner but a few chapters later, cheer when he gets his face slapped.Read more ›
I'm already waiting for the next one....
PhD historian, and now private investigator (In partnership with former Maricopa Sheriff Peralta), Mapstone is going through a tough time. His second wife has left him after suffering a miscarriage and his girlfriend (his wife's sister) was recently shot to death in an attempt to kill Mapstone. Or something. That would get anyone down, but Mapstone turns moping into melodrama as he and Peralta pursue the murder of a high-priced call girl and her husband, whom we meet briefly but never get to know or care about. The high point of the silliness, for me, is when the murderers/terrorists lead Mapstone all over Phoenix, presumably to insure that he isn't being followed; then drop off a package for him from an airplane! This book is like that.
I very much like the idea that Talton wants to make Phoenix/Scottsdale, our mutual home town, a character in the story ala Dennis Lehane, Sara Paretsky, Raymond Chandler, etc. But, even here, his effort is uneven, substituting lists of buildings and streets for real insight into the area. For example, he could have used plenty of examples of Minutemen, racial profiling and other current events to demonstrate why terrorists might feel comfortable here, but he never does. It's all just, "Phoenix was nice when I was a kid, but now it's going to Hell."
Obviously, I can't recommend this book. I'm sorry about that because I think Talton has the talent to be a fine novelist, and David Mapstone could become a good protagonist. Maybe next time.
The stories are great and pretty original. As a resident of Phoenix, I also get to appreciate visualizing the settings Talton provides, and using his histories to give many of the things I already know about, more depth and texture. I was curious how this would work for someone unfamiliar with Phoenix. But a decent portion of this book is set in San Diego, a place I've never visited before. Yet, I found his descriptions and short histories easily understandable and a big part of what I found entertaining.
The cast of characters is always interesting, and if you know something about Phoenix, you will find a little something (or a lotta something) of a real Arizonan in them....even the bad guys.
My only complaint is with the primary character, David Mapstone.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I discovered this author and this David Mapstone series about a year ago. I think each one is better than the previous one. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Jogger1
I have tried to read all of Jon Talton's books written while he was living here in Arizona. I have run into a problem as I thought I had purchased most if not all of them on... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Dorothy Gaber
I really tried to like this book to no avail. Characters were stiff; the plot is convoluted and the premise is weak.Published 14 months ago by J. Kunkel
i am more and more concerned about the use of product placement in fiction. to me that is an author selling out, making a book into one big commercial. Read morePublished 15 months ago by RedShoesGirl
It was wonderful to have the full cast of David Mapstone characters back in good form in this suspenseful mystery.Published 16 months ago by Amazon Customer
Love the David mapstone books
Fun to read if you know Phoenix and the areas around the valley
I have read all the books in the David Mapstone Series. They were all attention holders, the kind of plot building that keeps me turning pages. Read morePublished on August 3, 2014 by Brockmann fan
I love the Mapstone mysteries, being an Arizona native. His sense of place and ability to describe Phoenix is perfect and though I've been a Californian for many years, I love... Read morePublished on July 18, 2014 by Rusty
This is the seventh in the author’s excellent southwestern US crime series. It features two former members of a county sheriff’s department. Read morePublished on June 29, 2014 by carl brookins