Pronzini's 36th Nameless Detective novel, though a marked improvement over its immediate predecessor, 2010's Betrayers, hardly reflects a return to form by the MWA Grand Master. This entry, like other recent books in the series, alternates between the eponymous lead, a San Francisco PI, and the ongoing travails of his colleague, Jake Runyon. Obnoxious businessman David Virden hires Nameless to trace his first (of three) ex-wives, so that he can get the annulment his current fiancée requires. While Nameless quickly finds the first former Mrs. Virden, his client's subsequent disappearance leads to violent complications. Runyon's case has a personal aspect—his new love interest, Bryn Darby, believes that her nine-year-old son, Bobby, is being abused by her ex-husband, but can't get Bobby to confirm her fears. Runyon's discovery of the truth likewise has violent consequences. Contrivances that some readers will find hard to swallow burden both story lines. (June)
Reviewed on: 04/11/2011 Release date: 06/01/2011 Genre: Fiction
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