cover image Unraveling


Karen Lord. DAW, $26 (304p) ISBN 978-0-7564-1520-4

Lord’s standalone murder mystery is a fascinating work of fantasy that’s short on plot. As forensic therapist Miranda Ecouvo is wrapping up a serial murder case, she has a near-death experience that puts her squarely in the sights of the angels as well as Chance and the Trickster, a pair of semi-immortal brothers. With the brothers as her guides, she realizes that the case isn’t over and the mastermind behind the killings—whose goal is to attain immortality—can still be stopped. Lord plays with reality and dreams as Miranda follows the brothers on a dizzying chase across various labyrinths. The language is lush and beautiful, but the novel’s mazelike narrative can be hard to follow, and it starts to drag in its final third. Readers drawn to Miranda and her story will find that the effort it takes to untangle Lord’s puzzle is well repaid; others will find it needlessly complicated. Agent: Sally Harding, Cooke Agency. (June)