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City of Lost Girls (Ed Loy Series #5)

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  • Posted May 8, 2010

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    I Also Recommend:

    Ed Loy faces his past and his future

    City of Lost Girls is an excellent novel marred only by passages that could have used some editing to shorten them. Hughes is a verbose writer and so good that he can carry it off ... most of the time. I found myself on two or three occasions flipping pages to get past some lengthy and not very interesting asides. But the novel is otherwise very sharp. Crisp dialog, believable characters and nicely paced and plotted. Ed Loy comes across as a solid and interesting character that one cares about, cares what happens to him. The plot is interesting, I won't bore you with a recap, the professional reviews do that, except to say that there are some very nice twists and a very, for me, unexpected ending to the story. Well worth the money and time spent.

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  • Posted April 9, 2010

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    memorable characterizations in this suspenseful tale

    Shamus Award winner Declan Hughes isn't just any noteworthy crime writer - he's an Irish one and for this reader that makes all the difference. There's a bit of a poet in him, as well as a richly developed descriptive technique. Now, add to this his two decades as a playwright and screenwriter, a background which he brings to the printed page, and you have CITY OF LOST GIRLS.

    With this, the fifth in Hughes's Irish private investigator Ed Loy series we find Loy torn between tracking a psychotic murderer who kills young girls, always a trio of them, and the history he shares with film director Jack Donovan. They go back quite a way; as Loy says of their past, "I don't want to talk about it, don't want to think about it. Sooner or later, we would get to it anyway. The past is always out there, a land mine buried and forgotten about, ready to blow the present apart at any moment." And, there are plenty of land mines for Loy to avoid in this story.

    As it happens Donovan is now shooting a film in Dublin, and he calls Loy to find the person sending him threatening letters. The task is complicated when two extras in the film, young girls, go missing. There is a third girl, who must be protected. Eventually, Loy finds a similarity between what is happening in Dublin and what happened in Los Angeles some years ago - three young women disappeared from a film that Jack Donovan was making. LAPD never found them and when presumed dead had no clue as to the murderer.

    Loy returns to Los Angeles to try to piece together the connection fully aware that a serial killer is still loose, perhaps in Dublin.

    Hughes studs CITY OF LOST GIRLS with vignettes regarding Hollywood's beautiful people and film making itself, while at the same time ratcheting up suspense via an eerie voice, an anonymous narrator who is obviously the killer.

    - Gail Cooke

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