USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR
“Short of hopping on a plane, tearing across Europe with art expert Laurel Beacham is the way to travel. In Abstract Aliases, Ritter Ames delivers a complex plot that will keep you guessing until the end, and captures the high-end art world in such detail one wonders if she isn't moonlighting as an ‘art recovery expert’ herself!” – Carlene O'Neil, Author of the Cypress Cove Mystery Series
“Filled with twists and turns, action, art heists, and plenty of chemistry between the very handsome Jack Hawkes and daring narrator Laurel Beacham…rich descriptions and a discriminating tone of detail…Abstract Aliases continues an excellent collection from Ritter Ames.” – Girl with Book Lungs
Abstract clues lead to new questions. New leads turn to “dead” ends. A heist plot ties to forgeries. Adversaries resurface twisting an already complicated case. And art recovery expert Laurel Beacham must not only outwit criminals, but keep her wits around Jack Hawkes’s cheeky ego.
Before the criminals they were tracking headed underground, evidence pointed toward two organizations as key to an epic art heist. Despite their best efforts, Laurel and her team haven’t caught a break in months—even Jack’s unofficial intel stuttered to a halt. But on New Year’s, as Big Ben’s bell tolls midnight, the guilty return and nowhere is safe. A source in Rome is killed within hours. Other allies are attacked in Rome and London, and a contact in Germany reports dangerous shadows closing in. The nearer the answers, the higher the stakes. Worse, Jack may not be the only one Laurel must learn to trust to avoid another brush with death.
Related subjects include: women sleuths, cozy mysteries, amateur sleuth books, murder mysteries, whodunit mysteries (whodunnit), book club recommendations.
Books in the Bodies of Art Mystery Series:
- COUNTERFEIT CONSPIRACIES (#1)
- MARKED MASTERS (#2)
- ABSTRACT ALIASES (#3)
Part of the Henery Press Mystery Series Collection, if you like one, you'll probably like them all…
Ritter Ames lives atop a high green hill in the country with her husband and Labrador retriever, and spends each day globe-trotting the art world from her laptop with Pandora blasting into her earbuds. Often with the dog snoring at her feet. Much like her Bodies of Art Mysteries, Ritter’s favorite vacations start in London, then spiral out in every direction. She’s been known to plan trips after researching new books, and keeps a list of “can’t miss” foods to taste along the way. Visit her at www.ritterames.com where she blogs about all the crazy things that interest her.
Read an Excerpt
We stood across the wide moonlit river from Big Ben, in the prime spot for viewing London's New Year's fireworks extravaganza. The jubilant crowd jostled and shouldered its way to fill every inch along the Thames, more than a half-million people crowding into every open space around us this clear cold night. All waiting for the countdown to start. Even with the event tickets Jack had snagged, we shared our roped-off space with about a hundred thousand fellow revelers. Central London bridges began shutting down just after noon, readying for the standing-room-only masses, and many of the streets were closed all day in preparation for the night's event and the hordes of people looking for a place to catch the stunning pyrotechnic performance. Rock music pulsed through the PA system, but the constant babble of the voices around us, most raised so their words could be heard by the people standing next to them, made all sound flow into a nearly incomprehensible rumble.
"Have you been here for the Lord Mayor's event before?" Jack Hawkes leaned down and shouted into my ear.
"Not for a while," I returned, equally loud. I'd been in Sydney the last couple of years, enjoying the milder weather during their January summers. Though the temps in Oz were nice and the people definitely fun, it didn't have the same electric feel for me as a frosty New Year's Eve in New York or the U.K. The brisk wind off the water zigzagged through the crowd, blowing my long hair across my face. I used a hand to brush away the blond curls, then hunkered down in my champagne-colored leather coat as I added, "This is all much as I remember, though it is kind of weird getting a priority spot."
"But worth it," Jack said. "The special ticketing for the event only happened a couple of years ago. From the crowd control standpoint alone it offers a lot of advantages."
Safety, naturally, had created an even greater need for knowing who might be in a crowded world capital during something as well- attended as this public party. The thought made me take another glance around the crushing public. Not that I thought I would spot criminal activity — or even could in this throng — but it seemed the thing to do. When my sweeping gaze returned to Jack, I saw he was doing exactly the same thing. As an art recovery expert, observation skills are my chief tools of the trade. Jack's talents were even better developed than mine, though I hadn't yet learned why he was such a pro at doing a job he never talked about.
I moved closer and tugged his collar. When I wore heels he stood nearly a head taller than me, but the walking boots I'd donned for the occasion kept me much closer to the ground. I wasn't worried about being overheard in this cacophony, but I wanted him to actually hear my words when I asked, "Nico told me he sent you a tracking app. Did you get it?"
My wonder geek, Nico, usually kept tabs on me via the GPS in my phone, but Jack had rather unconventional ways of doing so. Ways we'd argued about. Often.
Jack cocked a dark eyebrow. "Yes, he said it was to track you more easily. I was surprised you didn't argue."
"So you didn't say anything because ... ?"
He shrugged and had the grace to look a little sheepish.
"Nico got inventive after Tony B kidnapped me in Miami. When his thugs broke my phone and I disappeared from everyone's radar, he decided we needed a backup method for GPS." I held up my left hand to show off my newest piece of jewelry. A lovely charm bracelet. "The camera charm disguises a tiny transmitter."
The app Nico sent to Jack keyed into the charm's frequency.
"You're okay with that?" he asked.
"Nico asked permission."
"Like he wouldn't have done it regardless."
"Still, he asked."
"I feel privileged to be in the inner circle. To know where you are at all times."
I caught the sarcasm in his tone and matched it. "I didn't want you to keep working so hard behind the scenes. You might use up too many favors with MI-5 and the Met police."
Jack gave me a crooked grin, then fingered the tiny silver camera. "At least I'll know where your bracelet is at all times."
I got the dig. He knew I'd slip my leash whenever I wanted, but his steady gaze told me he understood I took the continued threat seriously. We didn't know why I had become particularly interesting to criminals during the previous months, but until we identified the reason or captured all the players, I was ready to accept a little electronic help from one of Nico's gizmos.
We'd had our rocky starts, Jack and I, not the least of which due to both of us wanting to always be in charge and neither really trusting the other. With reason. He knew everything about me — well, all about the "public Laurel Beacham" at least — and told me little about himself. Jack's reason for not always trusting me was ... well, I play by my own rules. Some of those rules have gotten me into trouble lately. When finding lost art is the objective, trouble can happen more often than one would think. Being able to always track me had become a priority, whether I liked it or not.
He looked at his Silberstein. "Minutes away from the countdown. Are you getting cold?"
Only my face felt the freezing temps off the river. I knew he was changing the subject. The bundled crowd around us was more than enough body heat to keep us warm. "I'm toasty. Does the Eye signal the start again?"
He nodded. "The lights begin flashing about ten seconds before."
Next, the glorious twelve-count strikes of Big Ben would sound and fireworks soar thundering to the heavens and usher in new beginnings, new promise, and a new year. It didn't matter how many times I witnessed an event like this, the kid in me always got antsy. I wanted it all — pronto.
"There's the kissing at midnight, remember," Jack said, his gaze never leaving mine.
"I think in a crowd this size we should have no trouble finding a friend to pair up with." I smiled.
"Did you think I was sugges — "
His teasing response was interrupted by a slurred shout. "Oy! Jack Hawkes. How the devil are you?"
A thirties-something man stumbled into us. He was rail thin, even in his long gray greatcoat, but his momentum almost made us lose our footing. The man was also familiar.
"Hamish." Jack bolstered the tipsy friend. "Never expected to see you here tonight, mate."
The interloper turned to me, weaving a bit and slurring, "Can't forget this pretty lady ... Laurel Beacham, correct?"
I smiled and nodded, realizing the obnoxious drunk was an old school chum Jack introduced me to when we were in Florence last fall chasing criminals. Hamish taught art history at the university level there, and I'd had Nico check him out. Nothing overly suspicious came up on his background, nor anything to imply involvement in the prospective heist we currently worried over. We struck him from our list of suspects when no big payoffs appeared in his bank accounts. Though he was likely in town for Christmas visiting, I did find it interesting he was in London and materialized beside us at this event.
"Here on winter break," he said, confirming my suspicion as he gave Jack a friendly slap on the back. Knowing the man had no biceps, I doubted Jack felt a thing. Hamish continued, "Have to leave tomorrow to return to teaching the dil-et-tante rabble."
Despite his stutter over dilettante, I began to think he wasn't as buzzed as he appeared. He couldn't be truly drunk, or one of the roving bobbies would have moved him through the crowd and out the gates. Was it an act for us? Or had he simply been super-careful until he spotted his old friend, Jack? Just the same, I wondered how much alcohol was actually in that skinny body.
"Is Milli here?" I asked, stretching tall to pretend to look for his pretty wife.
Hamish waved a crazy hand as if brushing something aside. "No crowds for our tight-assed Mills. She's afraid someone will trod on her fancy shoes."
She was from money and held the purse strings. Was this a drunk's loose-tongued revelation, or an admission of trouble in paradise? For Hamish's sake, I hoped not the latter. His personal paycheck could not provide the lifestyle he'd grown accustomed to with his marriage to Millicent and her daddy's money.
Suddenly, a raised voice on the loud speakers cried, "One minute, everyone!" The air charged. The crowd shifted. Everyone turned toward the London Eye.
"Forty-nine, forty-eight — "
A half-million voices counted down in unison with the speaker on the PA. I looked at Jack and he grinned at me. I felt eight again — and twenty-eight at the same time. I raised my voice with the others.
Hamish stayed silent beside me. Maybe he was too drunk to be able to count backward. As we hit twelve, I turned and saw he was staring off in the distance. Away from the flashing wheel keeping us on track with the countdown.
"Ten, nine — "
I kept in time with everyone else, smiling up at Jack before watching the lights again.
"Three, two, one — "
The bell in Big Ben gave a decisive first gong as the lights strobed around the Eye. I turned to Jack as he moved toward me.
Then I was whirled around and smashed into the worst slobbery, beery kiss of all time.
Jack roared, "What the bloody hell?"
I tried desperately to escape Hamish's determined embrace. I finally broke free and pushed away from the intoxicated boor. Jack's fist was already in play.
He had obviously been aiming for the side of Hamish's ear. When I pushed the fool, my chin ended up in the trajectory instead. Quick reflexes and a bit of luck allowed Jack to pull back a little, making it a glancing blow. Nonetheless, the brief contact with the side of his fist knocked me off my feet.
"Oh my god, Laurel. I'm sorry. I saw at the last second, but I could only — "
I waved a hand at the distraught almost-white knight kneeling beside me. "I'm alright." I wiggled my jaw a couple of times to be sure. Yep, I'd be sore, but it wasn't anything I hadn't experienced before. "At least you didn't strangle me this time." I smiled as best I could to show I was teasing, but Jack's face immediately grew more thunderous at something behind me.
Turning, I realized we had more trouble.
"Laurel, mon dieu, I will call an ambulance." It was Rollie, the grandson of Devin Moran, the master criminal we presumed was in charge of the premier heist Jack and my team were trying to stop. All of Moran's confederates were on our most wanted list, and Rollie in particular because he may have been connected with Tony B due to video evidence of a couple of recent events. While we'd been working feverishly since October to find the hole he and everyone else was hiding in, I definitely didn't need him there. At that moment.
The last time we'd seen Rollie he was walking down an Italian sidewalk with an international felon. Now he was in London, apparently attempting to get Jack to throw another punch as they set me back on my feet. They were more successful at playing tug of war with me as the presumed prize.
"Stop!" I jerked my arms free and pulled my cuffs back down to my wrists. "I'm fine. Thanks, both of you."
"I saw him hit you." Rollie got ahead of me and bent down, trying to look closer at my chin. "We will call the gendarme. I will swear — "
"I didn't mean to hit her," Jack growled and tried to pull me away. Rollie made another grab for my arm.
A far too interested crowd had formed around us, and the fireworks were proceeding without anyone in our vicinity paying the slightest attention. Why should they when the ground entertainment rivaled any top ten reality show?
Hamish did the smart thing and disappeared. I needed to get Rollie to do the same. Especially once I saw we'd caught the attention of a uniformed bobby. The officer was making his way down from the edge of the crowd. Time to work fast.
"Guys, please." I smiled at Jack, then turned to Rollie. "I appreciate your help, but Jack's chivalry simply backfired. It was an accident. Please, go back and join your friends, Rollie, and don't worry about me."
"Non, I will stay here, I will — "
"No." I shook my head and reached up to pat his chest with my hands, effectively pushing Rollie away as my fingers touched the fine leather I recognized from this year's Versace line. "I'm going to call it a night, and Jack will take me home."
"This barbarian —"
Jack pushed in closer. "I didn't —" he started.
I interrupted my Hulks before they rumbled. "It's all right. Thanks so much for your help, Rollie." The bobby was close enough to see my smile. I gave him a "don't worry about it" wave and pulled on Jack's arm. "Let's go."
I didn't see which direction Rollie headed. I hoped seeing me turn my back on him and going away with Jack would end further discussion.
Roman candles burn at temperatures exceeding twenty-five- hundred degrees centigrade. I'm not sure Jack's temper wasn't beyond this range as we worked our way through the crowd. He likely could have talked his way out of any trouble with the constable, but we didn't need the attention.
"Damn that bastard Hamish," Jack cursed. "All the times I saved his bloody arse in school."
"He was drunk tonight and mad at his wife," I said. After the awful kiss I knew he'd had his share of alcohol, but I did wonder what he was looking at moments before the big blowup.
Jack growled something under his breath, before saying louder, "Then that arse Rollie shows up and acts like I did it on purpose."
"Well, you did mean to throw the punch."
"I didn't mean to hit you!" He pulled me nearer a street light and looked closely at my jawline. "Laurel, I'll make this up to you, I promise."
"You certainly will," I said, trying to keep from wincing when he touched a tender spot. "You're taking me dancing, buster. Dinner too. That's how you'll make it up to me."
He finally grinned. "Dancing with you doesn't exactly sound like punishment."
"You've only worked with me a few months. You have no idea how long I can dance."
He laughed. I'd completed my objective. "Really, I'm okay." I gave him a hug.
I kept my arms around him but leaned back to see his face, right as another symphony of light splashed across the sky in every imaginable color. The noise was ear-shattering, and I could already smell the gunpowder riding the air currents, but the effect was magnificent. "Oh, my."
"Let's stand over there and watch."
I nodded, and we moved along the fringe. He kept his arm around my shoulders, and I let him. As the music swelled and the heavenly display reached its climax, his body relaxed a little, and I thought everything was back in balance again.
Until he said, "Really, you didn't have to flirt with the jerk to keep him from reporting me to the police. I do have resources, you know."
"I do know." I looked up at him. "So do I. What you thought was me flirting to get him to go quietly away actually served a higher purpose. It allowed me to leave a small remembrance of this evening in the breast pocket of his jacket. The kind of pocket in leather coats men likely never use. Or look into."
At Jack's puzzled expression I held up my left arm, making sure my charm bracelet glowed in the light. The bracelet no longer displaying a tiny silver camera.
"When you straightened your cuffs," Jack said, wonder filling his voice.
"When I straightened my cuffs."
"We can track him."
"You can. I don't have the app."
"I could kiss you."
"First, pull out your phone and start tracking."CHAPTER 2
The app told us Rollie was still in the midst of the crowd, but at the other end from where we'd all been at midnight. As we went one way to exit, he'd gone the opposite direction. Deeper into the crowd. How did he happen across us unless it had been with intent? Was he following me, or both of us? Or had he been tipped off by someone who knew our plans this evening?
Standing in a space filled with a hundred thousand other ticketed gawkers, I simply couldn't believe it coincidence.
"How do you think Hamish and Rollie both lucked into us in the masses of people?" I asked.
Jack looked up from the screen and stared off across the Thames. "I've been wondering the very same thing. Have you noticed any shadows lately?"
"I haven't really been looking."
"Nor have I."
Lazy. Both of us. We counted on someone at Interpol or Scotland Yard to notify us if Rollie stepped through any customs points. Hamish Ravensdale, however, had never been a person of interest.
"You know Hamish from years ago. What do you know about him lately?"(Continues…)
Excerpted from "Abstract Aliases"
Copyright © 2016 Ritter Ames.
Excerpted by permission of Henery Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
“Abstract Aliases” is the third book in the A Bodies of Art Mystery series by Ritter Ames. Each book builds off the previous ones, so I highly recommend reading the books in order. There are many references backwards to the prior books and it could be both a bit confusing and a bit of a spoiler to read them out of order. In this book, Laurel Beacham is on the run from those who would hurt her. As a change, she is not actively searching for a particular piece of art. Instead, she and Jack, the infuriating Englishman who keeps pushing his way into her life (and maybe her heart) are on their trail of a group that is busy murdering art forgers. The settings are primarily Italy and a bit in England with descriptions of beautiful landmarks and artwork as well. As the bodies start piling up, there seems to be a target on Laurel and Jack to be added to the list. The action is non-stop and the reveals are surprising. I am certainly ready to read more in this series to find out where it is all leading. I was provided a digital advance reader copy of this book by the publisher via Netgalley.
"Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night." - Margo Channing (All About Eve). Not only is it going to be a bumpy night, but Abstract Aliases turns into one fast and furious roller coaster ride, with Laurel Beacham and Jack Hawkes barely one step ahead of the criminals pursuing them. Is it because Laurel and Jack have come too close to finding out the mastermind(s) of the Art theft and forgery ring that they first came upon in Counterfeit Conspiracies, the Book 1 in Ritter Ames Bodies of Art mysteries? Abstract Aliases is a non-stop thrill ride that tests Laurel, Jack, Nico and Cassie to the extreme. No one seems to be safe, and thank goodness Laurel has her trusty Fendi bag and her other tricks of the trade to help thwart those trying to stop both her and Jack at every turn, and at any cost. I love this series, and this book is particularly good and very hard to put down, and Ritter Ames is an amazing storyteller. Abstract Aliases is exciting, and nail biting, and keeps you guessing at every turn. Laurel is a gutsy protagonist whose passion for returning original works of art back to museums or the rightful owners is her driving force, and keeps her going despite threats, warnings and attempts on her life. Jack's role has become more and more clear, and he and Laurel make a formidable team. I can't wait to read Fatal Forgeries, and will definitely fasten my seatbelt!
I won this boo from Goodreads giveaways. I was not required to give a favorable review. All thoughts are my own. This was a very interesting story of art thieves, murder, family lies and travel across Europe on finding out how and where forged art pieces are being bought and sold in the country and also the good people can turn bad and good people can get hurt trying to stop them.
“Abstract Aliases” earns 5/5 Newly Recovered Masterpieces! I won this book, and am offering an honest review. Laurel has unwittingly become a ‘person of interest’ of many criminals due to her dogged success finding stolen masterpieces, and the continuing investigation into a crime syndicate with its art heists, forgeries, moles, and murders puts Laurel in danger. Simon Babbage, former head of the UK office, has resurfaced putting Laurel on the run questioning, why is he back and what is he looking for? Jack is in Italy checking on a key figure to their investigation who is in serious condition after being attacked in jail. What does this guy know? Who wants him out? Once again, with the assistance from Scotland Yard and Laurel’s team, Cassie and Nico, she and Jack are off to uncover connections with the mastermind Moran, motives of a former employee, and secrets connected to her mother long since gone…a box, vintage jewelry, and photographs. This third book in the Bodies of Art Mystery series is as engaging and entertaining a worldwide romp as the first two books, and I highly recommend the entire series. There is an ongoing thread connecting the books together making it more enjoyable starting at the beginning of the series with “Counterfeit Conspiracies” and “Marked Masters.” Ritter Ames has penned a marvelous story with Laurel Beacham continuing to show her cleverness and intuition portraying a strong character, Jack Hawkins as the perfect partner—even though she might not recognize it, and realistic description and dialogue which adds to the excitement…I was thrilled!
Title: Abstract Aliases - Bodies of Art Mysteries Book 3 Author: Ritter Ames Published: 10-11-2016 Publisher: Henery Press Pages: 268 Genre: Mystery, Thrillers & Suspense Sub Genre: Amateur Sleuths; International Mystery & Crime; Cozy Mystery ISBN: 13: 9781635110739 ASIN: B01IDP5CSI Reviewer: DelAnne Reviewed For: NetGalley Rating: 4.75 Stars I received a copy of Abstract Aliases" from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for my honest review. Description of "Abstract Aliases" From the Publishers: Abstract clues lead to new questions. New leads turn to “dead” ends. A heist plot ties to forgeries. Adversaries resurface twisting an already complicated case. And art recovery expert Laurel Beacham must not only outwit criminals, but keep her wits around Jack Hawkes’s cheeky ego. Before the criminals they were tracking headed underground, evidence pointed toward two organizations as key to an epic art heist. Despite their best efforts, Laurel and her team haven’t caught a break in months—even Jack’s unofficial intel stuttered to a halt. But on New Year’s, as Big Ben’s bell tolls midnight, the guilty return and nowhere is safe. A source in Rome is killed within hours. Other allies are attacked in Rome and London, and a contact in Germany reports dangerous shadows closing in. The nearer the answers, the higher the stakes. Worse, Jack may not be the only one Laurel must learn to trust to avoid another brush with death. Books in the Bodies of Art Mystery Series: COUNTERFEIT CONSPIRACIES (#1) MARKED MASTERS (#2) ABSTRACT ALIASES (#3) My Review of "Abstract Aliases": Ritter Ames brings back - Bodies of Art Mysteries and Laurel and Jack as her two strong central characters With the chaotic background of New Years they must track two art theft rings. Their search leads them hither and yon as they realize the conspiracy motto "Trust no one", is true for them also if they hope to stay alive. Ritter's story line just gets better and better with each new novel she writes. I look forward to seeing what happens in the next book in the series. A series that appeals to art lovers and mystery lovers alike. My rating of "Abstract Aliases" is 4.75 out of 5 stars.
I never knew there was so much action and intrigue in the art world until I started reading Ritter Ames series with Laurel Beacham. You can't trust anyone and I do mean anyone. I'm finding this to be a great series and am liking it better with every book that I read. Laurel and Jack, while still hiding a lot of their pasts from each other, are well developed characters. You can't help but like them. The two other key players on the team, Cassie and Nico, are likable as well. Well, Nico can be a little grumpy at times. There are always secrets coming out of the woodwork and suspicious characters that come into the story and then fade out, then come back in. There are two factions of art forgers, I think, you just can't tell who's going to jump ship and start their own. Allegiances mean nothing and its Laurel's job to figure it all out and get the real copies of art back to the original owners. As I said, this series just keeps getting better and better! Thanks to Henery Press and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest review. These are my words and I was not coerced by anyone to write them.
Abstract Aliases is the third book in the Bodies of Art Mystery series by Ritter Ames. We pick up a few weeks after the end of book 2, Marked Masters, as Laurel Beacham and Jack Hawkes share a quiet moment in a crowd of thousands as the countdown to midnight occurs and they await the ringing in of the new year on Big Ben. Amazingly in such a large crowd they encounter Hamish Ravensdale, Jack's friend from school, as well as Rollie, who they had earlier determined to be head of the art forgery ring Moran's grandson. Coincidence? Also to arrive in London on New Year's Day and storm the London branch of Beacham Ltd., is former office head gone rogue Simon Babbage. Using a "secret" back entrance, Laurel and her assistant Cassie are able to escape, but just barely. And that is just the beginning of a very stressful day! Murders in Rome, forgers being killed across Europe, and kidnapping attempts made on Laurel put everyone on edge. The mysterious Moran telling Laurel to be careful, that the head of Ermo Colle, another forgery ring, wanted her dead, made no sense. Why would Moran want to protect Laurel and why would the head of this mysterious organization want her dead? What threat could she possibly pose? Another fast paced edition of this series, Ritter Ames's expert storytelling will have you hanging on. Reading late into the night, I found this book impossible to put down and when it was over it left me anxious to have the next story in this series. I absolutely recommend both this book and the complete series!
I have waited a long time to read book three, Abstract Aliases. I might be a teeny bit obsessive but I love this series! Ritter Ames has weaved a story of intrigue and mystery once again and I couldn’t wait to read more about Laurel Beacham and Jack Hawkes. Although they aren’t an official “team”, they sure do spark the pages! There is lots of banter but the story is not about romance, it is about the mystery. These two go around the world, chasing art thieves and “bad” guys. The descriptions of the different places are so real, you will feel like you are right there. London, Paris, the US…these two jet set all over. I get my traveling kicks and I don’t even have to pack. Love Laurel’s comrades in crime-fighting (besides Jack, of course) and my favorite is Nico. He’s always pulling some kind of technology out of a hat to help, or track (!) Laurel as she often gets into “trouble”. He is a favorite character, too. Great writing helps me to come up with all kinds of scenarios about Laurel and Jack in my head. This series has been such fun for me and finally reading book 3 was worth the wait. I highly recommend Abstract Aliases and the entire Bodies of Art Mystery series.
Abstract Aliases by Ritter Ames is the third book in her Bodies of Art series and was a fascinating read. I honestly don't believe that you could read this book as a stand alone. You really need to have read the first two books in order to understand where Laurel, Cassie, Jack and Nico are at in the investigation. The plot was so smoothly paced that I never became bored or lost. Ms. Ames' detailed descriptions of the cities actually makes me feel like I am right there with Laurel. Action that kept me glued to the pages and frightened for Laurel and Jack's well being, the twists and turns that kept surprising me and the reveal of the elusive new villain all added up to a fantastic read. I LOVED this book and am already impatient for the next book to be released. I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Another winner in the Bodies of Art Mystery series. This is a fast paced mystery that kept me turning pages just as quickly as possible. The author has created a novel filled with mystery, mayhem, and art....an interesting combination. As Laurel tries to solve a series of mysteries, she travels between locations and countries frequently, and in a way that the author has made the locations additional characters. This one kept me on the edge of my seat. This is a must read for fans of the genre. While this is part of a series, it is a stand alone novel. Also, while the author has crafted many cozy mysteries, this is a much meatier mystery that I wouldn't classify as a cozy - purely my subjective opinion.
Once again Jack and Laurel find themselves running for their lives in this fast paced mystery series. In this story, 3rd of the series, we learn a little more about both Laurel and Jack's history, as they try to uncover the plan involving art forgeries and the murders of these forgers. These books need to be read in order to better understand and appreciate the depths of their hunt and their growing reliance on each other. I can't wait for the next book in this series to continue this adventure. Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
[I received this book from the author. I am also a member of her Street Team] " Moran said something...like 'the easiest or best way to make money isn't necessarily art'" London on New Years, a jumping place. And where we find Laurel Beacham and Jack Hawkes celebrating as well as scoping out the area. As ever,duty calls with the Foundation's London office in fairly good shape under Cassie's oversight. Laurel, defacto head of the office now, is still looking over her shoulder for her former boss/ boyfriend and his goons. Will she ever feel safe again? Can she trust anyone? She'd opt for low profiles, but with a major portion of the Foundation's work being recovery of stolen art, that's the last thing she wants, as the press wants to know everything.... With Ritter Ames, we are guaranteed a wild ride across Europe. The detail she imparts in a single scene teaches as well as entertains. From London to Germany , classic art to casinos, fun and games to serious sleuthing,Laurel and Jack, Nico and Cassie, and their cadre of good guys and bad guys find the predictable and the surprising in the most interesting places. Will they recover the answers to the questions they might even know they are asking. Can they even trust what they think they know?About each other and about themselves. Hooray, Laurel and Jack are back! 5 stars