Hot Rocks

Lev Raphael, Author . Perseverance $14.95 (211p) ISBN 978-1-880284-83-4

At the start of Raphael's entertaining seventh Nick Hoffman mystery (after 2004's Tropic of Murder ), the State University of Michigan English professor stumbles on a corpse in a steam room—Vlado Zamaria, the ruthless head trainer at the Michigan Muscle health club. Nick and his pal, Juno Dromgoole, team up once again to ferret out the killer, for whom there's no shortage of suspects: Vlado's bland, dutiful wife plus a plethora of actual and wanna-be lovers and jealous trainers. Nick manages a too-easy sneak peek into Zamaria's unlocked office, finding secrets that eventually reveal the murderer. He half-seriously considers becoming a private eye, much to the chagrin of his lover, Stefan Borowski, who has been stewing in his own troubles. The many amusing and eclectic literary references that alternate with salacious gossip and humorous philosophical rants partially compensate for the novel's lack of tension and action. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 02/19/2007
Release date: 04/01/2007
Genre: Fiction
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