cover image Death by His Grace

Death by His Grace

Kwei Quartey. Soho Crime, $26.95 (272p) ISBN 978-1-61695-708-7

Murder strikes close to home in Quartey’s disappointing fifth mystery featuring Ghanaian Chief Insp. Darko Dawson (after 2016’s Gold of Our Fathers). When Darko arrives at the scene of a double homicide, he’s shaken to discover that one of the victims is Katherine Vanderpuye, his wife Christine’s beloved cousin. Katherine was butchered with a machete, her head practically severed; her watchman, Gabriel, was also almost decapitated. Katherine was experiencing difficulty in her marriage. Her inability to conceive alienated her attorney husband, Solomon, and turned his family against her. Solomon’s relatives accused her of being a witch, and Solomon claimed that she was deliberately remaining barren and was trying to poison him. Despite Darko’s familial connection with the crime, he’s kept on the case. He diligently considers suspects besides Solomon, including the flamboyant Bishop Clem Howard-Mills, who had been counseling the unhappy couple. The solution to the whodunit is not as clever as in Quartey’s previous, more memorable books. Agent: Marly Rusoff, Marly Rusoff Literary Agency. (Aug.)