The Fitzgerald Ruse (Blackman Agency Investigations) (Large Print / Paperback)
"An excellent regional mystery, full of local color and historical detail." —Library Journal
Former Chief Warrant Officer Sam Blackman lost a leg in Iraq and emerged from the V.A. hospital in Asheville, NC, as a bitter civilian without a job or a future. But when he solved a series of local murders, Sam found new meaning for his life. Now he and his partner, Nakayla Robertson, are opening a detective agency. They have high hopes that the thriving mountain region will provide a steady stream of cases.
Their first client, a quirky elderly woman in a retirement community, makes a strange request. She wants Sam to right a wrong she committed more than 70 years ago. Her victim: F. Scott Fitzgerald. Her crime: stealing a manuscript. Sam's task seems simple enough: retrieve the woman's lockbox and deliver the manuscript to Fitzgerald's heirs.
But nothing is simple for Sam. The lockbox is sealed with a swastika, a symbol his client insists predates the Nazis and reflects a scene from The Great Gatsby. Then a security guard is killed and the lockbox disappears. Not only has this investigation triggered a murder, but Sam's final military case has followed him from Iraq and neither he nor anyone close to him is safe....
Mark de Castrique grew up in the mountains of western North Carolina where many of his novels are set. He's a veteran of the television and film production industry, has served as an adjunct professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte teaching The American Mystery, and he's a frequent speaker and workshop leader. He and his wife, Linda, live in Charlotte, North Carolina. www.markdecastrique.com
"The warmth of Sam and Nakayla's relationship and Sam’s challenged but determined heart make for a great read..." — Kirkus Reviews
"Readers will hope to see a lot more of the books’ amiable characters..." — Publishers Weekly