It's 1979 and Colleen Hayes is continuing to build her PI practice. She's opened a small office and named it Hayes Confidential. But she's an ex-con so getting her license is proving to be problematic. She is visited by Ingrid Richter, a senior bank executive from Germany who is in San Francisco for a conference. She hires Colleen to find her nephew Erich Hahn, who has just arrived in town but has disappeared. It turns out that finding Erich is not the real problem. Colleen discovers that Erich may be a dangerous Nazi hunter. And a local neo-Nazi group Aryan Alliance may also be linked to the case. When the group threatens Colleen and her pregnant daughter, things get personal. Through Colleen impressive skills, she learns more about Ingrid and Erich and their experiences during WWII. The story includes flashbacks to 1942 and Sachsenhausen, the concentration camp where they both were imprisoned. Colleen's investigation takes her from San Francisco to Rome where she puts her own life in jeopardy.
The Colleen Hayes Mystery Series has been thoroughly enjoyable to date. I love that it is set in San Francisco and its late 1970s time period has brought a nice sense of nostalgia. And imagine being a PI today without a cell phone and online resources. Author Max Tomlinson has gone a little darker in Line of Darkness, the fourth novel in the series. The action is fast-paced, and Colleen is a fierce protagonist. Including characters who have been impacted by WWII and the Nazis, makes this installment much more somber, yet no less entertaining. If you are not familiar with this series, it is so worth checking out. And I recommend reading the books in order, starting with Vanishing in the Haight. Happily, book #5 has already been announced making it a must-read for next summer.
Many thanks to Oceanview Publishing for the opportunity to read Line of Darkness in advance of its publication.
Rated 4.25 out of 5 stars.
Publication Date: August 16, 2022.
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