Monday, November 13, 2023

Aubrey Nye Hamilton Reviews: Hanging the Devil by Tim Maleeny

Hanging the Devil (Poisoned Pen Press, November 2023) is the fifth book about private investigator Cape Weather which Tim Maleeny has been leisurely producing over a span of several years. The first volume of this fine series was published in 2007 and we’re only getting #5 some 16 years later. Some of us wish he could write a bit faster. On the other hand, we have plenty of time to savor each title about Weathers and his sidekick Sally Mei, trained by the Triad as an assassin and now watching over San Francisco’s Chinatown.

Mei is just the right person for Grace, an eleven-year-old girl in trouble, to find. Grace was in the Asian Art Museum, where her uncle was security guard, when a helicopter crashed into one of the plate glass windows in an attempted robbery. The crash killed the pilot and Grace’s uncle but the robbers swept through the museum anyway and took a valuable Buddha before the police arrived. They saw Grace and gave chase but she escaped and Sally hid her in her secure loft apartment. Sally views any crime in Chinatown as a personal affront, and she enlists Weathers to assist her in identifying the lowlifes who had the impudence to raid the museum. The scene shifts periodically to Hong Kong, where Grace’s father Wen is imprisoned for his incorrect political views and he discovers some chilling medical experiments underway in the jail.

The plot threads link seamlessly across the major elements down to the final words in each chapter beginning the next one. Very slick. The action is nonstop and the points of view are complex, as the crime draws together Chinese mobsters, Russian gangsters, an Interpol agent, and the local police, along with Grace, Weathers, and Mei. The Chinatown setting is rife with realistic detail, reflecting Maleeny’s long association with the area. Amusing dialogue and polished writing top off a very good read. Highly recommended.

Starred review from Library Journal and LJ’’s September Mystery Pick of the Month.

(Get it here as things at Amazon are not working quite right. KRT)

·         Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press (November 14, 2023)

·         Language: English

·         Paperback: 416 pages

·         ISBN-10: 172827916X

·         ISBN-13: 978-1728279169


Aubrey Nye Hamilton ©2023

Aubrey Hamilton is a former librarian who works on Federal It projects by day and reads mysteries at night.


Lesa said...

Aubrey is right about everything she says about this book. So much fun with non-stop action.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

Because of her review, I went and put the first book in the series on hold at the library. Sounds like this new one just got the double stamp of approval.