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There Lies a Hidden Scorpion [Hardcover]

Takis Iakovou , Judy Iakovou
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Dec 17 1999 Nick and Julia Lambros Mysteries (Book 3)
When Nick and Julia Lambros hang the "Closed for Vacation" sign on their Delphi, Georgia restaurant, what they've planned is a joyful trip to Tarpon Springs, Florida, for the wedding of Nick's godchild Kate to Alex Kyriakidis, the son of a wealthy hotel owner. A reunion with Greek friends and family and a week's stay at the beautiful Mediterranean-style hotel couldn't be more needed - or deserved.

But from the moment Nick and Julia arrive in Florida, it seems like rest and relaxation are just not in the cards. First they witness a car swerving out of control and into the bay, forcing Nick and his cousin Spiros to rush to the sinking passengers' rescue. Then, as a series of ominous warning signs and small disasters begin to close in on the wedding party, superstitious family members insist the pending nuptials are cursed and must be cancelled. Nick and Julia, responding to a desperate plea from Kate's father, once again resume the role of detectives as they try to uncover which of the young couple's family or friends will stop at nothing - not even murder - to stop Kate and Alex from exchanging vows.

For Nick and Julia, it's a race to clear the innocent, expose the guilty and hopefully save a wedding that seems destined for catastrophe. Takis and Judy Iakovou's colorful cast of characters and authentic Greek atmosphere make There Lies a Hidden Scorpion a captivating mystery that promises to keep readers spellbound until the very last page.


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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Departing from the seriousness of their previous novel, Go Close Against the Enemy, which dealt with the lingering effects of racism in the South, the Iakovous' latest cozy takes a light, romantic turn in the sunny state of Florida. When Nick and Julia Lambros are invited to the wedding of some Greek friends, they decide to leave their Georgia restaurant to relax at the Tarpon Springs luxury resort owned by the father of the groom. On their first night there, however, they witness a fatal car accident that looks like murder. Adding to the ominous atmosphere, Kate and Alex, the bride and groom, have been receiving several Greek curses (a severed rooster's head among them) from an anonymous ill-wisher, prompting Alex's superstitious grandmother to plead for the wedding to be called off. Kate's father suspects an ex-business partner looking for revenge, but there are other possible culprits, and when a murder occurs inside the hotel, Nick and Julia begin to sleuth. Though the story is filled with possibility, it's marred by roughly drawn characters and a predictable ending. What sparkles, however, is the Iakovous' fascinating but unobtrusive detailing of Greek culture. Julia, an American in the midst of a Greek family celebration, feels like an outsider, especially when her Greek husband is pursued by a beautiful young compatriot. It's likely that many readers will be more interested in her feelings, and in the outcome of this romantic aside, than in the solution to the crime. (Dec.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

An invitation to a wedding lures Nick and Julia away from their Greek restaurant in Georgia to Tarpon Springs, Florida. They arrive in town just in time for Nick to rescue a young woman from drowning when her car plunges into the water: the driver was not so lucky. They soon find that the bride's father, Manolis, who runs a Greek cafe, and the groom's father, Christos, who rules the huge Greek hotel where the wedding will take place, are bedeviled with problems large and small. Worse, the icy grandmother of the groom feels the impending marriage is cursed. We are plunged into a complicated circle of Greek and Greek-American characters and customs, centered on the Epiphany celebration and the upcoming wedding, with Julia's wry commentary tracking another murder, a weeping icon, a fair amount of double-dealing, treachery, smuggling, and forgery. GraceAnne A. DeCandido

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Portrayal of Greek-American Community Jan. 4 2003
Format:Hardcover
When Julia and Nick, married restaurant owners, arrive in Tarpon Springs, Florida, one of the largest Greek American communities in the United States, they immediately become ensconced in a series of events that beg for them to assume their Nick and Nora-like detective personas. As all activities revolve around the wedding of their friend Manolis' daughter to the son of a wealthy hotel owner and entrepreneur, the authors can expertly relay to the reader the customs and traditions of the Greek-American community while paving the way for a delightfully non-stop romp of intrigue. The narrator, Julia, speaks from the heart; her unfamiliarity with the Greek-American world makes her the perfect guide for the non-Greek American reader to become acquainted along with her to this culture's warmth and wealth of tradition. Most amusing is her handling of the sensual Rula, who vies for Nick's attention with her sexy dancing expertise. Father Charles' rather unfortunate reaction to his favorite cigars ranks highly on the fun meter also. My one complaint would be the lack of allowing the narrator some musing time where the new information is weighed with the old and analyzed for alternatives. The action in this story is relentless and perhaps needs a little settling time between steps to allow the reader to come up with theories of his/her own. Otherwise, it is a colorful portrayal of the Greek-American world--one I heartily recommend. I look forward to reading the Iakovou's other two Nick and Julia mysteries.
Was this review helpful to you?
Format:Hardcover
Nick and Julie Lambros own the Oracle Café in Delphi, Georgia when they decide to shut down the restaurant during a slow period. The couple heads to Tampon Springs, Florida for a vacation and to fulfill a social obligation. The daughter of a friend and fellow restaurant owner Manolis Papavasilakis is marrying the son of a multimillionaire. His side is hosting the entire event at his brand new hotel resort, The Mediterraneo.

Now that Nick and Julia are in town, thing are anything but dull. They are almost run over when an out of control car containing a slumped over driver and a passenger struggling to properly steer the vehicle drive up onto the sidewalk. The car lands in the water with only one person surviving. The survivor and the dead woman just came from Manolis's restaurant where they had a drink. Someone tries to play tricks on the bride and groom in an effort to get the superstitious grandmother of the groom to call off the wedding. Finally an unknown person steals a rare coin that is part of a family heirloom necklace given by the groom to the bride. The companion to the groom's grandmother is the prime suspect. Julia disagrees and begins to sleuth again. Julia finds a dead person in a room in the Mediterraneo. This leads to the police beginning an investigation, but it doesn't halt Julia's efforts, a place that places the Lambros family in danger.

Readers will agree that the time between Nick and Julia mysteries is too long. The audience will also believe that THERE LIES A HIDDEN SCORPION is so good the wait was worth every minute. Fans obtain an intriguing look at a Greek-American community inside of an interesting mystery storyline. The secondary characters are a fascinating group, but the lead protagonists make this a one-sitting novel.

Harriet Klausner
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Mystery Dec 27 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
There don't seem to be many couples who are sleuths and they can be such fun. This third book in the Nick and Julia Lambros series is a rare treat for those who like married sleuths.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book Dec 27 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I loved this book. It was like going on a great vacation where an intriguing mystery occurred.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Too long between titles in this excellent mystery series Dec 6 1999
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Nick and Julie Lambros own the Oracle Café in Delphi, Georgia when they decide to shut down the restaurant during a slow period. The couple heads to Tampon Springs, Florida for a vacation and to fulfill a social obligation. The daughter of a friend and fellow restaurant owner Manolis Papavasilakis is marrying the son of a multimillionaire. His side is hosting the entire event at his brand new hotel resort, The Mediterraneo.

Now that Nick and Julia are in town, thing are anything but dull. They are almost run over when an out of control car containing a slumped over driver and a passenger struggling to properly steer the vehicle drive up onto the sidewalk. The car lands in the water with only one person surviving. The survivor and the dead woman just came from Manolis's restaurant where they had a drink. Someone tries to play tricks on the bride and groom in an effort to get the superstitious grandmother of the groom to call off the wedding. Finally an unknown person steals a rare coin that is part of a family heirloom necklace given by the groom to the bride. The companion to the groom's grandmother is the prime suspect. Julia disagrees and begins to sleuth again. Julia finds a dead person in a room in the Mediterraneo. This leads to the police beginning an investigation, but it doesn't halt Julia's efforts, a place that places the Lambros family in danger.

Readers will agree that the time between Nick and Julia mysteries is too long. The audience will also believe that THERE LIES A HIDDEN SCORPION is so good the wait was worth every minute. Fans obtain an intriguing look at a Greek-American community inside of an interesting mystery storyline. The secondary characters are a fascinating group, but the lead protagonists make this a one-sitting novel.

Harriet Klausner
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Portrayal of Greek-American Community Jan. 4 2003
By Diana F. Von Behren - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
When Julia and Nick, married restaurant owners, arrive in Tarpon Springs, Florida, one of the largest Greek American communities in the United States, they immediately become ensconced in a series of events that beg for them to assume their Nick and Nora-like detective personas. As all activities revolve around the wedding of their friend Manolis' daughter to the son of a wealthy hotel owner and entrepreneur, the authors can expertly relay to the reader the customs and traditions of the Greek-American community while paving the way for a delightfully non-stop romp of intrigue. The narrator, Julia, speaks from the heart; her unfamiliarity with the Greek-American world makes her the perfect guide for the non-Greek American reader to become acquainted along with her to this culture's warmth and wealth of tradition. Most amusing is her handling of the sensual Rula, who vies for Nick's attention with her sexy dancing expertise. Father Charles' rather unfortunate reaction to his favorite cigars ranks highly on the fun meter also. My one complaint would be the lack of allowing the narrator some musing time where the new information is weighed with the old and analyzed for alternatives. The action in this story is relentless and perhaps needs a little settling time between steps to allow the reader to come up with theories of his/her own. Otherwise, it is a colorful portrayal of the Greek-American world--one I heartily recommend. I look forward to reading the Iakovou's other two Nick and Julia mysteries.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Mystery Dec 27 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
There don't seem to be many couples who are sleuths and they can be such fun. This third book in the Nick and Julia Lambros series is a rare treat for those who like married sleuths.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book Dec 27 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I loved this book. It was like going on a great vacation where an intriguing mystery occurred.
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