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review 2017-10-31 23:19
Extraordinary People by Peter May - My Thoughts
Extraordinary People - Peter May

A good friend recommended Peter May to me when I was looking for mystery writers to add to my 'to read' list.  I picked up a couple and this is the one I decided to read first. Out of all of his books, I picked this one because I liked the idea of a Scots-Italian hero in his early 50s with a pony tail.  *LOL*  Seriously!  Enzo Macleod.

I enjoyed the book for the most part.  I'm not totally enamoured of the afore-mentioned Enzo, but I suspect he will grow on me.  I honestly didn't like him at first, but by the end of the book he had improved muchly in my eyes.  :)  He has issues and he's a bit of a misogynist.  He - or maybe it's just the author - has a fixation on boobs.  If I had to hear about his student/assistant's bouncy bosom one more time, I think I'd have screamed.  *LOL*   There is also a subplot concerning his two daughters - half sisters - that I found interesting and I hope it continues on in the series.  Pretty sure that it will.

The mystery itself, the years past disappearance turned into years past murder of a brilliant French teacher at one of France's elite centres of higher education, wasn't that twisty turny, but it did keep me guessing until nearly the end.  I liked that it was much of a puzzle and involved a lot of give and take between Enzo and the secondary cast in brainstorming sessions. 

There was a lot of description going on - scene setting and location picturing - and I've come to think that this might be a hallmark of Brit-authored police procedurals/suspense novels.  It might turn some folk off, but it sure gave me a detailed mind-image of many of the mystery's locations throughout France. 

There were a couple of threads I thought were left dangling, but maybe they'll get picked up in the next Enzo File - or maybe they really are just coincidences, indicated a rising level of Enzo's paranoia as the story went on.  To be determined, as they say!

So, while not perfect, Extraordinary People was quite enjoyable and I'll indeed read more.  :)

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review 2017-06-10 20:07
Cast Iron by Peter May
Cast Iron: Enzo Macleod 6 (The Enzo Files) - Peter May

West of France, 1989.

A weeping killer deposits the unconscious body of nineteen year old Lucie Martin, her head wrapped in a blue plastic bag, into the water of a picturesque lake.

Lot-et-Garonne, 2003.

Fourteen years later a summer heatwave parches the earth, killing trees and bushes and drying out streams. In the scorched mud and desiccated slime of the lake a fisherman finds a skeleton wearing a bag over its skull.

Paris, October 2011.

In an elegant apartment in Paris, forensic expert Enzo Macleod pores over the scant evidence of this, the sixth cold case he has been challenged to solve. In taking on this old and seemingly impossible task he will put everything and everyone he holds dear in a peril he could never have imagined.


Once again I read the latest book in a series, and part of my wonder why on earth that I have not read any of the previous books? Especially since I love Peter May's Lewis trilogy.

Cast Iron is book six in the Enzo file series. Forensic expert Enzo Macleod made a bet to solve cold cases that journalist Roger Raffin has written about in a book, which includes the murder of Roger's wife Marie. In this, the sixth book is the murder of nineteen-year-old Lucie Martin that Enzo is trying to solve. However, it's a difficult case, and it gets personal when someone goes after someone Enzo loves.

I think that Peter May really have a talent for creating interesting characters and the Scottish-Italian Enzo Macload is a really fascinating character. He is a very good forensic expert with a very messy family situation. A baby with a woman that seems to loathe him (for some unknown reason), two daughters, Kristy who has a child with Raffin and Sophie who is not really his daughter after they found out that Enzo's ex-wife had an affair with his best friend. So, Enzo must also deal with a lot of personal stuff during the books progress.

I like the progress of the story, how Enzo starts off with Lucie Martin's murder, but soon realize that the case is bigger than just the one killing and the man suspected of killing Lucie, a serial killer who killed three prostitutes may or may not be Lucie's killer. The ending was really thrilling and intense. And I loved that there was a twist in the end that I did not foresee. I did think that the ending felt a bit too easy that there must be a game change and I was right, I just didn't see the one coming.

I really like the book and I hope to get the chance to read the previous five books some day!

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!

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review 2011-05-01 00:00
Blowback - Peter May We have dog detectives, cat detectives, recipe mysteries, vampire sleuths, etc. Most of these I ignore. At least a university professor who is a forensic science expert and works on cold cases makes sense.

Enzo MacLeod, is investigating the cold case murder of Marc Fraysse, a three star restaurant chef, who owned a place so famous that reservations were required six months in advance. Discovered by the local flic, Dominique, who, Enzo discovers to his delight, cleans up spectacularly out of uniform. (Some of these fall-spring relationships, I find disconcerting. The idea of dating someone younger than my daughter is weird.) Speaking of daughters, we learn relatively early that Enzo has sent his daughter to work incognito at the restaurant and he soon learns (mostly through her flirting with Phillippe) that Marc had been having an affair with Anne, the wife of the sous chef. After his death the restaurant was taken over by Marc’s brother, Gus. Rumors had been circulating that Marc was about to lose his third star. It seems a restaurant critic had it in for Marc.

Enzo enlists his daughter to help gather some undercover inside information and soon discovers that Marc problems way beyond those of a restaurateur in fear of losing a star. He was losing millions at the track. A multitude of other motives begin to surface as Enzo explores Marc’s relationship with his wife and brother, Gus, from whom he had been estranged for many years before Marc achieved his third star. Familial discord is a theme that inflicts both the Fraysse and MacLeod families and the parallels between the two seemed a bit too coincidental if not irrelevant.

May clearly loves haute cuisine which he describes in loving detail as well as the French countryside. I’m not a an oenophile so I suspect I didn't appreciate the effete (if not absurd) descriptions of wines. Nevertheless, they elicited an unintended chuckle. Well written with an ingenious plot; I’ll add some some of the earlier Enzo titles to my reading list. I knocked off a star because the forensic science seemed to take a back seat to cuisine.

I received a free copy of this book as an advanced reader copy. That it was free affected my judgment not a whit.
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