Title: Night Work: A Kate Martinelli Mystery
Publication Date: 2000
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: As New
Signed: Signed by Author(s)
Edition: First Edition.
Signed by Author 0553107135 This hardcover book is Fine, being square and tight. The boards and spine have no wear with pristine lettering. The pages and endpages are clean, with no markings or folds. The dustjacket is As New. Original Price is intact. Not ex-lib. No remainder mark. This copy is signed by the Author on the title page without inscription, and dated 5 Feb 2000 in her hand. Bookseller Inventory # 006252
Synopsis: Laurie R. King, creator of San Francisco homicide detective Kate Martinelli, has been praised by The New York Times Book Review for her "taut pacing...air of menace...superb characters." Now the author of A Grave Talent (winner of the top mystery awards on both sides of the Atlantic), To Play the Fool, and With Child continues the series with a crime novel as disturbing as it is riveting.
After her last harrowing case Kate is more than ready for routine police work and a newfound serenity with her longtime lover, Lee, and their circle of close friends. Until one night when her pager summons her to a scene of carefully executed murder. Half-hidden in a clump of bushes lies a well-muscled corpse, handcuffed and strangled, a stun gun's faint burn on his chest and candy in his pocket. The only person who might have wanted airport baggage handler James Larsen dead, it seems, is the wife he repeatedly abused--who recently left him for a women's shelter. But her alibi is airtight, her physique frail, and her attitude less than vengeful.
Kate and her partner, Al Hawkin, are stumped. Then a second body turns up--also zapped, cuffed, strangled...and carrying a chocolate bar. It is that of Matthew Banderas, a software salesman convicted of one rape, suspected of many more.
Yet, despite the newspaper headlines, Kate and Al can establish no personal link between the victims and cannot rule out coincidence. But in the midst of an unpromising investigation, Kate has another cause thrust upon her by her friend, feminist minister Roz Hall. Investigators have already called it an accident, but Roz is convinced the young Indian bride was actually murdered--and when Roz takes up a crusade, no one can deny her. As Kate wrestles with the clash between her personal and professional lives, a third killing draws her and Al into a network of pitiless destruction that reaches far beyond San Francisco, a contemporary-style hit list with shudderingly primal roots.
Winner of the Best First Crime Novel Award from both the Mystery Writers of America and the British Crime Writers' Association for the first book in the Kate Martinelli series, A Grave Talent, Laurie R. King has created a body of work that transcends genre classification and has fully broken out into the mainstream, novels which have the intensity and depth of superb literary work, spiced with harrowing suspense.
Winner of the Best First Crime Novel Award from both the Mystery Writers of America and the British Crime Writers Association for the first book in the Kate Martinelli series, A Grave Talent, Laurie R. King creates novels that have the intensity and depth of superb literary work, spiced with harrowing suspense. -->
Review: Laurie King's first Kate Martinelli mystery, A Grave Talent, won Best First Novel honors from both the Mystery Writers of America and the British Crime Writers' Association. In this fourth installment in the series, King once again displays her talent as both a prose stylist and a masterful plotter in a case that proves to be personally harrowing for her heroine.
While attending a school play one evening, Detective Martinelli gets what appears to be a routine page about a homicide. The murder victim is James Larsen, an airport baggage handler found in the Presidio, handcuffed, strangled, and with stun-gun burns on his chest. And apparently he had a sweet tooth, given the candies found in his pocket. When it comes out that Larsen was an abusive husband whose wife now lives in a shelter, Martinelli's list of suspects takes a distasteful turn. Could the perpetrator be connected with the Ladies of Perpetual Disgruntlement, the group of secretive women (or men) who've lately been terrorizing abusers and rapists around the city with their humorous, updated version of the tar-and-feather treatment? Could it be Larsen's wife, a mousy woman who, nonetheless, is clearly harboring some secrets? Could it be Roz Hall, Martinelli's social crusading feminist minister friend? In each case, rage would be justified, but not murder.
When two additional murder victims with similar profiles--and pockets full of candy--surface, the San Francisco media takes an interest in this latest instance of vigilante justice. The investigation is further complicated by Roz's very public interest in the case of a young Indian bride who she believes was murdered. As Martinelli and her partner Al Hawkins try to sort through the mire of emotional entanglements, personal politics, and public scrutiny, King deftly maneuvers her tale through several carefully crafted turns. The novel is also threaded with Hindu spirituality and images of the dark goddess Kali, a vengeful figure perfectly appropriate in a novel about victimized women striking back. --Patrick O'Kelley
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