Murder on the Left Bank

Black, Cara. Soho Crime. (Aimée Leduc, Bk. 18).Jun. 2018. 288p. ISBN 9781616959272. $27.95; ebk. ISBN 9781616959289. M
Next in Black's always entertaining "Aimée Leduc" series (after Murder in Saint-Germain), this well-crafted mystery is set on Paris's Left Bank, though not the chic environs of the fifth through seventh arrondissements; one of Black's strengths is showing us the grittier, everyday Paris. When 13th-arrondissement lawyer Éric Besson receives a notebook from elderly accountant Léo Solomon detailing how he laundered dirty money for dirty cops, Besson quickly sends it to the authorities via his assistant/nephew Marcus. But Marcus has been murdered, the notebook has vanished, and for help Besson turns to Aimée, best friend of his second cousin. Though she's doing computer security work for the Bibliothèque François-Mitter and is warned by an especially huffy partner René to stay away from criminal cases, Aimée must investigate; Éric says that her father, a victim of police corruption, is mentioned in the book. Aimée leapfrogs from Paris's Cambodian neighborhood, where Marcus's girlfriend lives, to La Manufacture des Gobelins, where Léo worked and tapestries are still made in the medieval fashion. Her efforts put daughter Chloe in danger, upping the tension, and the surprise ending is especially satisfying.
VERDICT Another great Aimée Leduc work; for all mystery fans. [See Prepub Alert, 12/8/17.]
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