The Red Chameleon is a fast, exciting read that mystery lovers will consume in huge gulps.
The Red Chameleon introduces us to a thrilling new hardboiled world. Wright has created a rich and nuanced protagonist, as well as a gripping plot, and she writes in a style agile enough to veer into surprising pockets of emotion.
A complex tale filled with humor and sharply drawn characters, Erica Wright takes the reader on a thrilling ride where confronting evil can scare you into hiding or help you come out of the shadows.
Kathleen Stone is a private investigator well versed in the art of disguise. Her wigs, costumes and varied personae come in handy in the fight against a revenge-minded villain from her days in the NYPD.
O Magazine (featured in 'Killing It: The Summer's Best Thrillers')
Erica Wright's The Red Chameleon is a gift to devotees of classical private-eye novels as well as contemporary crime fiction.”
A fast and funny private eye novel featuring Kathleen Stone, a kick-ass disguise artist who's a hoot under any name in any wig.
Erica Wright is such a wonderful writer, you'll be burning through the pages faster than a chameleon changes colors.
Stone is an engaging character with a disturbing background that adds another layer to the mayhem. Wright is a little darker and not quite as over the top as Janet Evanovich, but aficionados of humorous mysteries like the Stephanie Plum series and the Lucky O'Toole series by Deborah Coonts will want to add this to their reading lists.
The Red Chameleon introduces a female private eye with Kinsey Millhone's bold-as-brass attitude, Jane Whitefield's genius at disguise and Stephanie Plum's enviable predicament of having two boyfriends. ”
Marilyn Stasio - The New York Times Book Review
At the start of this riveting crime novel from poet Wright (Instructions for Killing the Jackal), PI Kat Stone, a former NYPD undercover detective, discovers the dead body of Stephen Kramer, the unfaithful husband she’s been tailing, in the men’s room of an Upper East Side bar. When Kat begins to look like the most likely suspect in Kramer’s shooting murder, Det. Ellis Dekker, who’s in charge of the case and a friend of Kat’s, vouches for her innocence and brings her unofficially into the investigation. After someone breaks into both her home and office, Kat begins to think that her former undercover activities might be catching up with her. Painful repressed memories start to surface that touch on the reason she resigned from the police force at age 25. A possible romance with Ellis adds to the intrigue, as does the appearance of a past lover. Readers will want to see more of the humorous, thoroughly engaging Kat. Agent: Penn Whaling, Ann Rittenberg Literary Agency. (June)
There's something very appealing about Kathleen Stone, a quick-change artist who can slip into the persona of Katie, Kat, Kitty, Kathy, Kate, Katya—or her personal favorite, 15-year-old Keith—at the drop of a hat or, more likely, the switch of a wig.
The New York Times Book Review
Meet Kathleen Stone, an ex-NYPD officer who is now a private investigator and a mistress of disguises (with the help of the best wigmaker in NYC). Her latest case involves trailing her client's possibly cheating husband. Stone follows him into a bar where he is killed in the men's room. Her suspicions are raised when the wife-turned-widow pays off Stone's contract with a nice bonus attached. As Stone continues to follow clues and work with her former police friends, she fears that her history as an undercover cop may be interfering with her present investigation. VERDICT Wright's debut novel offers a promising start to a hard-boiled series featuring an idiosyncratic female PI whose quirkiness will appeal to fans of Linda Barnes or Karen Kijewski. While the action is sometimes slowed down by excessively repeated wig details, the author gives tantalizing glimpses into Stone's undercover career that one hopes will be developed more to help further explain some of her unusual behaviors. The supporting characters are also well developed and absorbing.—Frances Thorsen, Chronicles of Crime Bookshop, Victoria, BC
Her cover blown, an undercover cop reinvents herself as a whole company of private investigators.Kathleen Stone's days on the NYPD left her with two things: an unscratchable itch for fellow cop Ellis Dekker and the skill to fade into the background in a way the 6-foot-2, ice-blond Dekker never could. Once the Costa gang makes her, though, Kathleen's net worth as a cop plummets to near zero. So she swaps her badge for a dozen wigs. Now, in two seconds, she can become Katy, Kat, Kitty, Katya—whomever her client du jour needs to get the goods on a cheating spouse or light-fingered partner. In her favorite black dress and spiffy red bob, she becomes Kathy Seasons, charming hedge fund hawks at Hamilton's while tailing Stephen Kramer, suspected of infidelity by his wife, Gloria. When Kramer gets popped in the men's room, Kathy runs from the bar, ditches the wig and resourcefully turns into 15-year-old Keith to give the police the slip. As ash-blonde Kate, Kathleen stakes out the Kramers' apartment in time to see young stud Leif Nichols pay the widow Kramer a two-hour condolence call. The next day, she's back as flame-haired Kathy, alleged real estate broker drafted to find a condo for James Clifton, a Wall Street wolf who happened to be in Hamilton's the day Kramer got offed. Between Clifton and Gloria Kramer, Kathleen has her hands full. But she still has time for a quick tryst with Marco, her alternative to the cagey Dekker; a trip out to Suffolk County with her doe-eyed secretary, Meeza; and a couple more corpses.All those rapid-fire costume changes give a jumpy feel to Wright's fast-paced, quirky debut.