Friday, August 18, 2017

The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes: A Stewart Hoag Mystery by David Handler

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

HARLAN COBEN calls it “One of my all-time favorite series! …David Handler is so good at writing one smart, funny page-turner after another that he makes it look easy.”

Fans of JANET EVANOVICH and CARL HIAASEN, get ready. If you haven’t yet discovered wisecracking sleuth Stewart “Hoagy” Hoag and his faithful basset hound Lulu, you’re in for a sharp, hilarious treat.

Once upon a time, Hoagy had it all: a hugely successful debut novel, a gorgeous celebrity wife, the glamorous world of New York City at his feet. These days, he scrapes by as a celebrity ghostwriter. A celebrity ghostwriter who finds himself investigating murders more often than he’d like.

And once upon a time, Richard Aintree was the most famous writer in America — high school students across the country read his one and only novel, a modern classic on par with The Catcher in the Rye. But after his wife’s death, Richard went into mourning… and then into hiding. No one has heard from him in twenty years.

Until now. Richard Aintree — or someone pretending to be Richard Aintree — has at last reached out to his two estranged daughters. Monette is a lifestyle queen à la Martha Stewart whose empire is crumbling; and once upon a time, Reggie was the love of Hoagy’s life. Both sisters have received mysterious typewritten letters from their father.

Hoagy is already on the case, having been hired to ghostwrite a tell-all book about the troubled Aintree family. But no sooner does he set up shop in the pool house of Monette’s Los Angeles mansion than murder strikes. With Lulu at his side — or more often cowering in his shadow — it’s up to Hoagy to unravel the mystery, catch the killer, and pour himself that perfect single-malt Scotch… before it’s too late.

my thoughts:

First off, I need to mention that this book is the ninth in a popular series (A Stewart Hoag Mystery) by David Handler.  And secondly, I've never ready any of the books in the series until now, so I honestly didn't know what to expect.  Why did I pick up a book way down in the line of a series?  Well, I loved the title and I loved the sound of it - a celebrity ghostwriter who is an amateur sleuth?  How crazy fun does that sound?! I just had to find out for myself if the book would be as fun a read as I imagined it to be.

I grabbed my copy, a huge cuppa, and settled down for a long afternoon of reading.  I knew that if I loved it, I wouldn't be getting up for anything.  And boy, did I love it!

The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes is a jolly good murder-mystery that deals with writers, books, celebrity scandal, and pet pooches.  Its light, fun, and easy to get lost in.  I absolutely enjoyed getting to know Hoagy and Lulu (his doggy sidekick) - they are quite the investigative pair.  Apparently, once upon a time, Hoagy wrote a novel, a bestselling novel.  However, he soon realized that he only had one novel in him.  So, he turned to ghostwriting for celebrities and became a part-time amateur sleuth.  Talk about a career change, eh?  Well, in this book, his agent calls him up and tells him about a new job.  Apparently, he is to write about the celebrated author, Richard Aintree and his family.  Hoagy sets off to stay with one of Aintree's daughters - Monette.  The other daughter, Reggie, was a love of Hoagy's once upon a time.  It seems both daughters have recently received letters from their father, who has long been in hiding, following his wife's death - and that was twenty years ago!  And then, there's the murder.  Yep, a murder!  Seems like Hoagy is going to need to call upon his sleuthing skills to find out what the heck is happening.  He needs to find the murderer, figure out who wrote those letters to Aintree's daughters, and find Aintree.  Hoagy definitely has his work cut out for him.

Handler has written a great new story to add to his collection of mysteries starring Stewart Hoag. Set in 1992, we get plenty of references to the nineties lifestyle and culture - all of which felt like a nice blast from the past.  We also get to know a terrific cast of characters who keep the story moving along with their dramatics and complicated lives.  The story itself has a noir-ish feel to it, which I just loved.  And the writing was top notch.  The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes is a delight for fans of Handler's books and anyone looking for a new mystery series to get lost in - you will LOVE this book!!  I know that I can't wait to get my hands on the first eight books in the Stewart Hoag mystery series - woo hoo, new books to devour!  I would definitely recommend this book!

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!


Patti Smith said...

I saw this book the other day somewhere and was very interested...and now I just need it! I wonder how much the books stand on their own?

Lark said...

So I just had to tell you that I was at the library today and there, sitting front and center on the "new books" shelf was a copy of The Lost Ones. As if it were meant to be. And because I'd just read your rave review of this book, I had to check it out! :D

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

This sounds like such a fun series! I love starting a series when there are multiple books already printed so I don't have to wait for the next one to come out.

Thanks for being a part of the tour!

Nadia said...

Patti Smith, definitely check this one out - it definitely stands on its own. I just want to read them all now, because I fell in love with Hoagy and Lulu :)

Lark, yes! It was meant to be :) Definitely let me know what you think - I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. :)

Heather, it definitely was a fun book and I'm sure the series will be the same :) Thanks for having me on the tour!

Terra said...

This book sounds great, thanks for telling me about this series. I am going to buy the first book.