The Book of Mirrors

E.O. Chirovici. Atria/Bestler, $26 (288p) ISBN 978-1-5011-4154-6

Early in Chirovici’s intricately plotted first novel, New York literary agent Peter Katz is intrigued by a manuscript titled The Book of Mirrors submitted by Richard Flynn, a copywriter for a Manhattan ad agency. It chronicles Flynn’s time at Princeton when as a senior he fell under the spell of a beautiful graduate student, Laura Baines, and of Joseph Wieder, a famous professor, who was murdered just before Christmas, 1987. Flynn’s memoir hints at a solution to the 27-year-old crime, as well as an affair between Baines and Wieder, but ends abruptly before revealing the killer. Was this Flynn’s veiled confession? When Katz learns Flynn has died, he hires investigative journalist John Keller to find the missing conclusion. Keller’s research leads to retired police detective Roy Freeman, who handled the original case. Recently diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s, Freeman launches his own investigation, believing it’s his last chance to do good. Faulty memories, outright lies, and secrets make it hard to know whom to believe. The action builds to a crafty and believable resolution. [em]Agent: Marilia Savvides, Peters, Fraser and Dunlop. (Feb.) [/em]