The Monet Murders: A Mystery

The Monet Murders: A Mystery

by Terry Mort

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Overview

The Monet Murders: A Mystery by Terry Mort

Private-investigator-to-the-stars Riley Fitzhugh finds himself caught up in the case of a missing Hollywood beauty—and a stolen Monet—in a 1930s hardboiled caper as deadly as it is delightful.

Hollywood, 1934. Prohibition is finally over, but there is still plenty of crime for an ambitious young private eye to investigate. Though he has a slightly checkered past, Riley Fitzhugh is well connected in the film industry and is hired by a major producer—whose lovely girlfriend has disappeared. He also is hired to recover a stolen Monet, a crime that results in two murders initially, with more to come.

Along the way Riley investigates the gambling ships anchored off L.A., gets involved with the girlfriend of the gangster running one of the ships, and disposes of the body of a would-be actor who assaults Riley’s girlfriend. He also meets an elegant English art history professor from UCLA who helps Riley authenticate several paintings and determine which ones are forgeries.

Riley lives at the Garden of Allah Hotel, the favorite watering place of screenwriters, and he meets and unknowingly assists many of them with their plots. Incidentally one of these gents, whose nom de plume is ‘Hobey Baker,’ might actually be F. Scott Fitzgerald . . .
Evoking the classic hardboiled style, The Monet Murders is a charmingly cosy murder mystery by a novelist whose "lucid, beautifully written books are a pleasure to read." (The Wall Street Journal)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781605987521
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publication date: 09/08/2015
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 352
File size: 634 KB

About the Author

Terry Mort attended Princeton University, followed by graduate school at the University of Michigan. Afterward he served as an officer in the navy, specializing in navigation and gunnery. His service included a lengthy deployment to Vietnam. He is the author of The Hemingway Patrols and The Wrath of Cochise. He lives with his wife, Sondra Hadley, in Sonoita, Arizona and Durango, Colorado.

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The Monet Murders: A Mystery 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
DarkRavenDH More than 1 year ago
The Clichés Never End… My thanks to my contacts at Pegasus Books, Iris Blasi, Katie McGuire, and Maia Larson, for my advance reading copy of this book. You ladies rock! Hollywood, 1934. The Nation has shrugged off the uncomfortable bonds that were Prohibition. Bruno Feldspar is a hard boiled Private Eye with a storied past. For example, his name isn’t Bruno Feldspar. Riley Fitzhugh assumes identities as he needs them, discarding the old ones as he goes. To interact with art professor Dennis “Bunny” Finch-Hayden, Fitzhugh becomes the more upper crust sounding Thomas Parke D’Invilliers. Riley is working for two clients. Manny Stairs, real name Shlomo Rabinowitz, (hey, this is Hollywood, remember!) wants Riley to find a girl who is a exact physical match to his dead girlfriend. Riley has been hired ($25 dollars a day plus expenses) to trace a lost Monet which was stolen and replaced with a fake. I actually enjoyed the book for a while, but the clichés just do not seem to stop. Since it is Hollywood 1934 there has to be the requisite “casting couch” references. It wouldn’t be hardboiled without a shady side to the detective, so we learn he’s been involved in at least two under the table deals. One was undercover with the FBI, but had all gone to Riley’s plan he would have stolen the proceeds. This may be the one original point in the whole book! Mort misses the opportunity to build on this momentum… There are the gambling ships anchored off the three mile limit, cigarette girls, Jewish gangsters, Italian gangsters, a touch of the Chicago mob and so on. Then there is the game of bed swapping that involves the PI and several women. It’s been done before, yeah? I’m having a bit of trouble finding an original idea. The murders would be fine if about half of the cliché stuff were trimmed away. No, it isn’t a unique case, but the presentation could have been salvaged. It is sad that in the end, I lost interest in this book. I give the book two stars… Quoth the Raven…
VicG More than 1 year ago
Terry Mort in his new book, “The Monet Murders” published by Pegasus Books LLC introduces us to Riley Fitzhugh. From the back cover: Private-investigator-to-the-stars Riley Fitzhugh finds himself caught up in the case of a missing Hollywood beauty―and a stolen Monet―in a 1930s hardboiled caper as deadly as it is delightful. Hollywood, 1934. Prohibition is finally over, but there is still plenty of crime for an ambitious young private eye to investigate. Though he has a slightly checkered past, Riley Fitzhugh is well connected in the film industry and is hired by a major producer―whose lovely girlfriend has disappeared. He also is hired to recover a stolen Monet, a crime that results in two murders initially, with more to come. Along the way Riley investigates the gambling ships anchored off L.A., gets involved with the girlfriend of the gangster running one of the ships, and disposes of the body of a would-be actor who assaults Riley’s girlfriend. He also meets an elegant English art history professor from UCLA who helps Riley authenticate several paintings and determine which ones are forgeries. Riley lives at the Garden of Allah Hotel, the favorite watering place of screenwriters, and he meets and unknowingly assists many of them with their plots. Incidentally one of these gents, whose nom de plume is ‘Hobey Baker,’ might actually be F. Scott Fitzgerald . . . Evoking the classic hardboiled style, The Monet Murders is a charmingly cozy murder mystery by a novelist whose “lucid, beautifully written books are a pleasure to read.” (The Wall Street Journal) I have not read such a clever use of the “hard-boiled private “I” in a really long time. Mr. Mort really knows the genre and how to use all the elements and still make it a fun read. Gambling ships, I did not know such things existed, 1934 Hollywood, murders and Monet are just some of the ingredients served up in this delightful smorgasbord. There are references to both real and fictional people all throughout the book, my favorite being that of Perry and Della, that will claim your attention. “The Monet Murders” grabs you with the storyline and keeps you flipping pages as fast as possible. This is a book with very interesting themes regarding evil and the evil inside us. Mr. Mort has given us a very interesting character in Riley and he makes us care for him all throughout the book. Don’t start this book late at night because you are going to want to finish it before you go to bed. A high-octane suspenseful thriller. I truly hope that Mr. Mort will give us more adventure with Private Investigator Riley Fitzhugh. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Pegasus Books LLC. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”