By LIZA NELSON Caroline Leavitt VICK BOUGHTON
February 19, 2007 12:00 PM

by Peter Spiegelman

REVIEWED BY CAROLINE LEAVITT

MYSTERY

In this third slam-bang installment of his gritty mystery series (Black Maps, Death’s Little Helper), Spiegelman’s melancholic gumshoe John March is hired by his philandering, arrogant brother to find and stop the mysterious hook-up who has been stalking him. But all is not as it seems: The more March delves into this femme fatale’s sordid past, the less he begins to trust his secretive sibling, and when her body turns up, his own desperate brother proves to be the prime suspect. Spiegelman has a genuine understanding of what we are capable of doing for love and the cruel cost of settling for anything else. Mystery fans will love his nifty guess-again plot, fuel-injected prose and deeply complex characters, but what shines is the way the author makes the murky, psychological secrets of relationships just as thrilling as the crime itself.

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