A weekly alert for followers of crime, mystery, and thriller fiction.
The Fallen, by Jassy Mackenzie (Soho Crime):
Following up on her exceptional second novel, last year’s Stolen Lives, South African author Mackenzie brings us this third outing for Johannesburg private eye Jade de Jong. She and her on-again, off-again boyfriend, police Superintendent David Patel, are supposed to be having a romantic scuba-diving vacation in the St. Lucia Estuary section of their country’s iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Patel, though, is failing badly to keep up his end of the adventure. Early on in this tale, he terminates their affair, sending De Jong in pursuit of other companionship. But the brutal stabbing of Amanda Bolton, a young air traffic controller turned dive instructor, convinces the gumshoe and the cop to set aside their personal differences and cooperate in investigating her murder. An extensive organized crime operation, a mysterious postcard discovered in the deceased’s room, and a deadly crash in the north of Africa all add drama to this tightly spun yarn.