read these popular detective novels, set in that glittering and romantic city. With MURDER ON THE QUAI, Cara Black provides her 16th title.
Long-time fans of the series will be startled to open this book and find a young Aimée, already clever at finding secondhand clothing with haute couture, struggling to do homework and prepare for a test in medical school! The book's actually a prequel to the other 15, and it introduces the reasons this stylish young woman will desert the classroom to take over her family's detective business -- as well as providing answers to many questions readers may have wondered about in the past, like how she started riding motorbikes, where her dog (named Miles Davis, a bichon frise) came from, how she met her super-hacker dwarf partner in crimesolving René, and -- most urgent of all -- the truth of how her father was framed and (gulp) met a dire end.
But if you've never read a Cara Black/Aimée Leduc mystery before, this one's still a great place to start. It opens in November 1989, on the weekend when the Berlin Wall was torn down. Quick math: that would be just 44 years since Paris's occupation, right? So of course, there's a plot thread involving Nazi brutality and gold, as well as Resistance fighters -- many still living at that time, as well as their children, and you know that part about how many generations will carry a crime with them? (Well, okay, the Bible says it differently, but you know what I mean, right?)
I enjoyed romping with Aimée through the Paris days and nights, and watching her grasp each hint and clue about both a crime she happens to investigate, and her own family's secrets. No wonder she chose a different route from medical school -- investigation and operating on a blend of sharp reasoning and fierce instinct suit her like a ... shall we say, like a tenderly aged Chanel jacket??
From Soho Press, which has been Cara Black's publisher from the start -- a gem of a prequel, indeed.