Family matters dominate bestseller Black’s absorbing 15th Aimée Leduc investigation (after 2014’s Murder in Pigalle). The baptism party of Aimée’s six-month-old baby, Chloé, is complicated by the arrival of the baby’s biological father, Melac, and by Nicu, an anguished Gypsy boy. Melac and his new wife want to share custody of Chloé. Nicu insists that his dying mother, an old family acquaintance and informant of Aimée’s late father, who ran the detective agency she inherited, has information to share about Aimée’s father’s unsolved murder a decade earlier. Classic spy scenes with an old-fashioned feel—meetings with dramatic figures in the back of cafés, trailing suspicious characters at fashionable parties—brush up against Aimée’s angst at managing life as a working single mother, while modern behavioral sensibilities and high-level politics butt heads with Gypsy traditions. Black imbues Aimée’s personal story with an exotic charm that feels more intimate than foreign. Agent: Katherine Fausset, Curtis Brown. (Mar.)
Sassy, openhearted Aimée Leduc is back for a 15th outing that takes readers to Paris's elegant, old-gold seventh arrondissement. It's not all luxe, though; even as Aimée balances work-life responsibilities as a new mom with a detective agency to run, she helps a poor Gypsy boy whose dangerously ill mother has a secret to share. The last two Aimée Leduc works broke onto the best sellers lists; don't miss.
Aimée Leduc (Murder in Pigalle, 2014, etc.) puts everything on the line to solve her most vexing cold case—the murder of her father.In France as elsewhere, the Roma live by their own rules, forging alliances and settling disputes within their own clans. So when Nicolás Constantin, a manouche teenager, approaches Aimée, she can hardly believe what he asks of her: to come to Hôpital Laennec on the Left Bank so his dying mother can make peace before passing. Convinced that Drina Constantin's deathbed confession will shed light on the explosion in Place Vendôme that killed her detective father, Aimée leaves her infant daughter, Chloé, with child minder Babette and hurries over to the chic 7th arrondissement, only to find that Drina has disappeared. Aimée is torn. She wants to be a good parent, especially now that the child's father, Melac, and his new wife, Donatine, have shown their determination to challenge her for custody. But to be the parent Chloé needs, Aimée needs to understand her own parents. What did her father know that made someone want to get him out of the way? And was his death connected to the disappearance of her mother years earlier? Aimée's search for answers takes her to the chic homes of haute bourgeoisie like Madame Uzes, who pinches her pennies while running missions for the gens du voyage; meanwhile, Aimée's partner, René, haunts dives like La Bouteille aux Puces, where Madame Bercou knows somebody who knows somebody who might know Drina. But it isn't until she finds Roland Leseur, an official at the Quai d'Orsay, whose younger brother Pascal, before his presumed suicide, was the youngest deputy in the Assemblée Nationale, that Aimée gets an inkling of the lofty heights her case will reach. Aimée's 15th outing is a killer, with all the suspense, all the surprise and all the Parisian flavor you'd expect from Black.
Praise for Murder on the Champ de Mars
"Smashing and suspenseful."
—The BBC's Between the Lines
"Aimée is a tall, spiky-haired P.I. who favors high heels, knock-off couture and Chanel No. 5. This time out, Aimée is juggling new motherhood with running her detective agency, when she gets word that a dying woman has a secret to share."
—The Sacramento Bee
"If you’re looking for a page-turner crime novel that takes you through the ins and outs of Paris, Black has enough material to keep a reader busy for quite a while."
—San Francisco Chronicle
"Don’t be daunted by the depth you find here. These books will go every bit as quickly as your vacation in Paris, if they do not in fact become your vacation in Paris."
—Rick Kleffel, KQED San Francisco
"Newcomers will be swept up in Black’s narrative as she follows Aimée through the streets and alleys of one of the world’s most exotic cities and cultures."
"In many ways, Aimée Leduc has changed from when we first met her. For one thing, Leduc is now a mother, in this, her fifteenth outing. But some things remain the same: Leduc is still passionate about her work in the detective agency she runs, and she still remains fashionably dressed, whether in a slinky black Versace dress or a vintage Courrèges (although perhaps with a little more baby spit-up)."
—Reviewing the Evidence
"No non-French crime writer can take you through Paris like Cara Black."
"Aimée's 15th outing is a killer, with all the suspense, all the surprise and all the Parisian flavor you'd expect from Black."
—Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
"Black once again delivers what her readers crave: high-speed Parisian peregrinations, chic suspense, a touch of humor, and the indomitable Aimée, as unstoppable with a baby strapped to her hip as she was with one growing in her belly."
"Sassy, openhearted Aimée Leduc is back for a 15th outing that takes readers to Paris’s elegant, old-gold seventh arrondissement. It’s not all luxe, though; even as Aimée balances work-life responsibilities as a new mom with a detective agency to run, she helps a poor Gypsy boy whose dangerously ill mother has a secret to share."
"Black does a masterful job of keeping the threads of suspense pulled taut, and braiding this complex investigation that puts Aimée Leduc and her family, friends, and career at risk in two directions at once."
"Black’s books are superb examples of the genre, not only (albeit largely) because of Aimée, but because they also invoke Paris—past and present—vividly."
—Critics At Large
Praise for the Aimée Leduc series
"Transcendently, seductively, irresistibly French."
"Wry, complex, sophisticated, intensely Parisian . . . One of the very best heroines in crime fiction today."
"So authentic you can practically smell the fresh baguettes and coffee."
“[Cara Black] is on to a good thing: each of her novels is set in a colorful Parisian neighborhood—and there are a lot of them. The cumulative result of reading this addictive series is a sort of mini-tour of the city, as seen through a filter of fictional murder . . . Leduc is always a reliable and charming guide to the city's lesser-known corners.”
—The Seattle Times
“Black creates rich, plausible characters, giving them individuality and depth.”
—San Francisco Gate