The Ice Maiden Cometh Not
Review: California real estate agent and PI wannabe Gil Yates hasn't had a case in years. As an unlicensed amateur, he can't exactly openly advertise and has to rely on word-of-mouth to get new business. Either his most satisfied mouths were staying shut or they had not opened to anyone who needed his services as an extravagantly expensive, highly effective, very private private investigator. But now he's received a message on his voice mail and, anxious to get back to work, as it were, he returns the call to Dr. Chester Kulp of Muhlenheim, Pennsylvania, which gets him started on a new case in The Ice Maiden Cometh Not, the ninth mystery in this series by Alistair Boyle.
Kulp’s son-in-law, Sandy Straus, had either fallen, jumped or was pushed from the roof of his own department store over a year ago. The police closed the case as a suicide, finding no evidence of foul play. Kulp’s daughter, though, is still in mourning, and believes Sandy was murdered. After a short introductory conversation, Gil quotes an outrageous fee — $10,000 a day, five day minimum plus a bonus of $50,000 if closed within five days — that Kulp finds equally outrageous. Gil has already taken a dislike to the man and is happy to walk away, but Kulp's wife insists he pay the fee, wanting closure once and for all so their family could move on.
The Ice Maiden Cometh Not is a most entertaining mystery. The storyline is well crafted, but it is the character of Gil Yates and his unique perspective on life that makes the book hard to put down. He's quick to form an opinion and almost as quick to express it. Here's his description of Kulp: "If you could gauge the range of human emotions expressed in a person's face on a scale of zero to one hundred, Dr. Kulp's range weighed in from about zero to six. He met me about midrange. My telephone impression was verified. The doctor was not a chap who got a lot of laughs out of life." Though Kulp may not see much humor in Gil, the reader most certainly will. Eight years have passed between the previous case for Gil and this one; here's hoping his next one will be sooner than later.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of The Ice Maiden Cometh Not.
Acknowledgment: Allen A. Knoll provided a copy of The Ice Maiden Cometh Not for this review.
Review Copyright © 2013 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Location(s) referenced in The Ice Maiden Cometh Not: Pennsylvania
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The Ice Maiden Cometh Not by Alistair Boyle — A Gil Yates Mystery
Publisher: Allen A. Knoll
Publication Date: November 2012
List Price: $23.00