cover image Miami Midnight: A Pete Fernandez Mystery

Miami Midnight: A Pete Fernandez Mystery

Alex Segura. Polis, $26 (352p) ISBN 978-1-947993-59-4

Segura’s workmanlike fifth Pete Fernandez mystery (after 2018’s Blackout) finds the recovering-alcoholic Miami, Fla., PI running a small bookstore after undergoing months of physical and psychological therapy. Pete feels he ought to be trying to locate the widow of an elderly Cuban gangster’s son, rescuing his friend Dave Mendoza from drug addiction, or resolving his relationship with his former investigative partner, Kathy Bentley; instead he becomes obsessed with a highly personal cold case. Pete persists despite interference from Silent Death, a nattily costumed (but spectacularly inept) contract killer, and the minions of cartel boss La Madrinda. Segura neatly pulls all the plot threads together, including many left over from the four earlier books: one involving an elusive former lover, who’s adept at switching identities; another involving a vicious but not-quite-defeated drug gang. An old-fashioned knight errant, Pete slogs and slugs his way forward until the last bullets have been sprayed. Fans of pulp detective fiction of an earlier era will appreciate this one. Agent: Dara Hyde, Hill Nadel Literary. (Aug.)