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Icarus

by Deon Meyer

Publishers Weekly In South African author Meyer's excellent fifth novel featuring Benny Griessel of Cape Town's Directorate of Priority Crime Investigations (after 2014's Cobra), Benny has been sober for more than 20 months, but he soon falls off the wagon after hearing tragic news about a colleague. Vollie Fish, who had caught two serial killers in four years, fatally shot his wife and two daughters and then himself, an apparent victim of his own demons. Meanwhile, someone has strangled Ernst Richter, called the Alibi Man for his website, which provides alibis, complete with phony documentation, for a price. Richter's death alone would be enough to unsettle those who use his services, but in addition someone has created a Twitter account that threatens to list all his clients in 18 hours. Meyer heightens the suspense with scenes of a defense attorney's conversations with an enigmatic client. The richness of the characters, especially the multifaceted Benny, elevates this above most contemporary police procedurals. Agent: Richard Pine, Inkwell Management. (Oct.) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list South African crime novelist Meyer delivers another expertly crafted thriller that feels exceptionally timely, given its focus on the high-tech and wine industries. Ernst Richter, the head of the Internet service MyAlibi, which provides forged documentation to cover up the whereabouts of cheating spouses, has been killed. Meanwhile, Captain Benny Griessel is badly shaken when he's called to the scene of a multiple homicide; a former colleague has killed his entire family. Suddenly, Benny, who has been sober for four years, succumbs to his need for a drink. His colleague, Vaughn Cupido, who has been put in charge of the high-profile Richter case, needs Benny on his game, but Benny is of the mind that he can control his demons, born of the chaos of his profession, much better when he's had a few. As he drifts ever further from sobriety, his beautiful partner, a former alcoholic herself, feels that Benny's presence is a danger to her own sobriety. As Benny's elite investigative unit struggles to close the case, Benny must decide whether he's willing to lose his job and his partner for the love of drink.--Wilkinson, Joanne Copyright 2015 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

Kirkus Sex, lies, and a lot of alcohol are the key elements in Meyer's (Cobra, 2014, etc.) latest thriller featuring Detective Captain Benny Griessel of the leading South African investigative team known as the Hawks. Griessel himself is incapacitated for most of the story: after two years as a recovering alcoholic, he's been shaken by a murder/suicide involving a colleague and has fallen off the wagon. While Griessel struggles to keep his life from falling apart, Ernst Richter, owner of the notorious website Alibi, turns up strangled. True to its name, Alibi promises airtight excuses for clients cheating on their spouses, but it seems that Richter hasn't honored his promise to keep his clients' identities secret. In a parallel storyline, Cape Town winemaker Francois de Toit outlines his troubled family history during a government investigation, a story that includes growing up with a psychopathic brother. De Toit has his own secret: he's become involved in a fraud scheme, in which his bottles of South African wine are sold internationally as high-priced Chateau Lafite Rothschild. The connection between these two stories won't become clear until Griessel can get his head out of the Jack Daniels. Complicating matters further, investigators in each of the cases find themselves falling in love with the possible suspects they're interviewing. Unlike previous Griessel volumes, this one makes only passing references to the political and racial climate of post-apartheid South Africa. But the surprising plot twists and the wealth of juicy subplots make this a standout entry in a superior series. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

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