cover image Overboard


Sara Paretsky. Morrow, $28.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-06-301088-8

In MWA Grand Master Paretsky’s timely, propulsive 21st V.I. Warshawski novel (after 2020’s Dead Land), the private investigator’s dogs get loose during a walk and lead her to an unconscious teenage girl on Chicago’s lakefront. She has no identification, but wakes long enough to whisper the word nagyi before EMTs take her away. The local news interviews Vic about the rescue, and shortly thereafter, two sets of cops—one from Homan Square, the Chicago PD’s enhanced interrogation facility—start harassing her for information about Jane Doe and any personal effects Vic may have found at the scene. When the girl later vanishes from the hospital and a possible witness is murdered, Vic resolves to find and protect her from further harm. Subplots involving hate crimes perpetrated against a Jewish Orthodox synagogue and a family of hustlers from Vic’s old neighborhood add to this thorny tale of corruption and greed. Paretsky’s dizzyingly complex plot strains credulity, but the tale’s relentless pacing, sky-high stakes, and strong social justice advocacy should keep readers invested in the expertly crafted characters’ fates. Series fans will get their money’s worth. Agent: Dominick Abel, Dominick Abel Literary. (May)