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Fatal Shadows Paperback – May 30 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: MLR Press; 2nd edition (May 30 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979311047
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979311048
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 204 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #586,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Publisher

Los Angeles bookseller and aspiring mystery author Adrien English opens his front door to murder one sunny morning. His old high school buddy (and employee) has been found stabbed to death in a back alley following a loud and very public argument with Adrien the previous evening.

Naturally the cops want to ask Adrien a few questions; they are none too impressed with his answers, and when a few hours later someone breaks into Adrien's shop and ransacks it, the law is inclined to think Adrien is trying to divert suspicion from himself.

Adrien knows better. Adrien knows he is next on the killer's list. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Author

Adrien English is attractive, successful and gay. But life changes for Adrien when his boyhood friend is murdered and Adrien becomes the cops' prime suspect. Soon Adrien realizes jail may be the least of his problems. First someone ransacks his shop, then the phone calls begin: "Adrien, I'm going to kill you..."

I hope you enjoy FATAL SHADOWS, and I welcome your comments at JoshLanyon@aol.com. I'm currently working on DANGEROUS TO KNOW, the next book in the series. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Paperback
Adrien English is a writer of mystery novels and owner of Cloak and Dagger Books, the bookstore with the largest selection of gay and gothic mystery titles in Los Angeles. When his current employee and oldest friend, Robert Hersey, is murdered, Adrien becomes obsessed with finding his killer. His obsession is further fueled by the fact that he's been singled out as the number one suspect by LAPD detectives Paul Chan and Jake Riordan.

In order to find the real killer and clear his name, Adrien takes on the task of investigating the murder himself. There are others with motive that could have killed Rob but the LAPD detectives won't listen to Adrien. When Adrien starts receiving strange phone calls and macabre gifts and other gay men start dying he knows that his own life is in danger.

Adrien's fears that he may be the killer's next victim once again fall on the deaf ears of the LAPD detectives. In fact, detectives Chan and Riordan are more of an aggravation and obstacle than any help. But even more of an irritant to Adrien is his growing preoccupation with enigmatic detective Riordan.

"Fatal Shadows" is the first installment in Josh Lanyon's Adrien English Mysteries series. In it he spins an extremely well written web of mystery and intrigue surrounding the murder of Rob Hersey. I do love a riveting page-turning plot that keeps me guessing and on the edge and the author delivers this in spades, with an attention to detail that serves to further heighten the elements of mystery and suspense. There are several suspects with motive in this story and I must admit to having pinned the wrong one as the possible murderer until about three-quarters into the story when the clues begin to fall into place.
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By Dr Max TOP 50 REVIEWER on Oct. 10 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book in spite of the proofing errors throughout. I learned to simply ignore sentences that had words thrown in that didn't belong. But I do feel that a literate proof reader would have been useful at some process in the publishing sequence. By the way, Mr. Lanyon, let's hope Adrien didn't actually spend time "pouring over documents" because that would have ruined them: the correct verb is "poring". This is the first book in what promises to be a series featuring Adrien English and Detective Riordan so it has the double burden of catching the reader's interest for the mystery as well as enticing us to read future volumes about these two characters and how they and their relationship might develop.

Errors aside, this was a fun read, all in all. Adrien English is a likeable character with a propensity for fainting at times of stress. Fortunately for him there always seems to be someone around to pick him up. Detective Riordan is also a promising character, which makes the reader want to find out more about him in subsequent novels. As a murder mystery the story was pretty good. I had pretty well figured out who had done it before I got to the end but the killer's motivation for the crimes was beyond me until that was explained right near the end. I'd have to be honest and say that the psychology behind the killer's motives seemed a little too facile but I'm sure that murders have been committed for less. Still, with a few quibbles aside, I liked the story and the main characters well enough to plan on reading the next couple of books in the Adrien English series. On second thought, maybe I'll order just the first one, to see if the proof reading improves, before I order the rest of the series.
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Format: Paperback
Adrien English was not at his best when the LAPD detectives called in the morning. He was disheveled, coffee-less and didn't feel any better when Detective Riordan informed him that Robert Hersey, his on-again-off-again friend and employee, had been murdered. He also got the distinct impression that he was a prime suspect in the murder. After all, he had dinner with Robert the night before he was murdered and was the last to seem him alive (besides the killer) and he was gay so he must have done it, right? Unfortunately, Adrien was not able to persuade the persistent police that he was not the killer, but they didn't arrest him...yet.
Adrien's life only got more complicated from that point as he found himself digging into the murder investigation, trying to clear his name, but always showing up at the wrong time or in the wrong place. He also started receiving threatening phone calls and knew that someone was out to get him. However, when he took his fears to the police and even presented them with a pattern of murders very like Robert's, Detective Riordan refused to give the ravings of a gay prima donna credence. Left on his own, Adrien keeps trying to solve the mystery while fending off creepy news reporter Bruce Green and trying to fight his feelings for the all too attractive Detective Riordan...
Fatal Shadows was a fast, fun mystery. I really liked Adrien as a character and enjoyed his sarcastic, wry sense of humor and subtle wit. Detective Riordan was also an interesting character and it is hard to tell what, if anything will happen between the two. The mystery was not rocket science and not very hard to figure out, even though it was a little farfetched and probably would never happen, but, hey, we're talking fiction here, right?
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