Death's Little Helpers

Peter Spiegelman, Author . Knopf $22.95 (352p) ISBN 978-1-4000-4079-7

Shamus-winner Spiegelman's intricate, intelligent second thriller to feature all-too-human New York PI John March (after 2003's Black Maps ) explores skulduggery in the world of high finance. Nina Sachs, a high-strung Brooklyn artist, hires March to find her missing ex-husband, Gregory Danes, an arrogant stock analyst who became a media star during the last bull market. Sachs hates Danes, but he's the father of their teenage son and her primary money supply (alimony, child support). March uncovers a huge list of potential enemies: investors burned by Danes, a vindictive ex-mistress, a scary Russian mobster and a reclusive hedge fund manager. That someone else is also looking for Danes—someone with the resources to surveil March, his girlfriend and his extended family—adds to the suspense. Spiegelman makes all the details ring true, and his fine prose can be lyrical (a spring rain gives Manhattan "a scrubbed, surprised look, like a drunk, waking up sober and in his own bed for the first time in a long time"). While the determined March has the requisite grit, he is also appealingly vulnerable and introspective. If it's hard to care too much about the victim, Spiegelman makes the search extremely compelling. Agent, Denise Marcil. (July 22)

Reviewed on: 05/30/2005
Release date: 07/01/2005
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 338 pages - 978-1-4000-3360-7
Open Ebook - 243 pages - 978-1-4000-4493-1
Compact Disc - 978-0-7927-3693-6
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7927-3692-9
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