Strange Gods

Annamaria Alfieri, Author
Annamaria Alfieri. Minotaur, $26.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-03971-2
Open Ebook - 288 pages - 978-1-250-03972-9
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After three standalone historicals set in South America, Alfieri (Blood Tango) turns to 1911 British East Africa for a whodunit stronger in concept than execution. When someone fatally spears Dr. Josiah Pennyman, who worked at the Scottish Mission hospital outside Nairobi, District Commissioner Cranford wants the killing pinned on the local witch doctor, who resented Pennyman’s infringement on his turf. But Pennyman’s idealistic assistant, Justin Tolliver, insists that a genuine investigation be carried out. Since Pennyman was a notorious rake, Tolliver has a number of jealous husbands to consider as suspects. The romance that develops between the bland Tolliver and the equally bland Vera McIntosh, who was the victim’s niece, doesn’t add much—nor does the appearance of real-life aristocratic big-game hunter Denys Finch Hatton. Even the scenes of encounters with wildlife come across as perfunctory. Readers interested in the premise will find the British TV series Heat of the Sun more satisfying. Agent: Adrienne Rosado, Nancy Yost Literary Agency. (June)
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