Crossing the Lines

Poisoned Pen. Aug. 2017. 264p. ISBN 9781464209147. $26.95; pap. ISBN 9781464209161. $15.95. F
Madeleine is a well-known crime novelist in a fragile state of marital happiness. At home she feels she is walking on eggshells, and the only time she is truly content is when she's working on her new book. Her protagonist Edward is a gentleman with his own tragic past and tenuous relationships who starts investigating a murder at his best friend's art opening. Edward is increasingly endangered in Madeleine's story, and Madeleine starts to become conflicted with how she is treating her character and burgeoning friend. As Madeleine retreats further into Edward's world, a very real bond between the two begins to develop, influencing and changing Madeleine's everyday life. The author of the "Rowland Sinclair" historical mystery series has written a metafictional stand-alone that delves into various kinds of relationships, whether contemporary marriage or the connection between an artist and her creation. The narrative is well written, but the honest portrayal of Madeleine and Edward (plus their supporting cast members) is really what carries this novel.
VERDICT Literary or pop fiction lovers will enjoy, but readers should be aware that this is not a stereotypical crime or detective story.
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