Return to Dust: A Rick Van Lam Mystery

Andrew Lanh. Poisoned Pen, $26.95 (308p) ISBN 978-1-4642-0428-9
In Lanh’s absorbing second Rick Van Lam mystery (after 2014’s Caught Dead), Rick’s talkative house cleaner, Marta Kowalski, whom the investigator doesn’t like much, takes a fatal fall from a Farmington, Conn., bridge into the Farmington River. The police rule Marta’s death a suicide, but when her attractive niece, Karen Corcoran, calls on Rick and insists that her aunt was murdered, Rick takes the case. In a search of Marta’s home, Rick finds evidence of her Catholic piety and her quaint reading habits—but none of depression. Marta did incite strong feelings in the people in her life. Her nephew, for example, loathed her. And then there’s the tricky circumstance that Karen stands to benefit from an insurance policy if it can be proved that her aunt’s death wasn’t suicide. Lively supporting characters include Rick’s ex-wife, Liz, and pal Hank Nguyen. Lanh (the pseudonym of Ed Ifkovic) seamlessly fills in their backstories. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/31/2015
Release date: 10/01/2015
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 470 pages - 978-1-4642-0427-2
Paperback - 308 pages - 978-1-4642-0428-9
Open Ebook - 308 pages - 978-1-4642-0429-6
Paperback - 440 pages - 978-1-5252-2723-3
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