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December 02, 2010

Holiday Book Spotlight: The Gregor Demarkian Mysteries


(First in an occasional series on my favorite holiday-themed books.)

Jane Haddam's first Gregor Demarkian novel, Not a Creature Was Stirring, is set at Christmas, and she moves through any number of other holidays (and back to Christmas a few times) in the next twenty-four volumes. Demarkian is a retired FBI agent who moves back to the Armenian neighborhood in Philadelphia where he grew up, and takes on cases as favors for various powerful people he knows. These definitely aren't cozies, holiday themes notwithstanding; they're more along the lines of Elizabeth George or P.D. James.

The later books are a little less holiday-themed than the earlier ones, but they're all great, and this is one series that, on average, improves as it goes rather than declining in quality. Unfortunately, the first bunch of books are out of print, but you can probably find them at your library. If you can't, just jump in later. It looks like the fifteenth, Skeleton Key (set at Halloween) is the earliest in print, but I started with the next, True Believers, and then went back and hunted down the older ones. The mysteries themselves stand alone, but if you read out of order, you will be spoiled for some events in the characters' personal lives. (It didn't really bother me in this case, and I care more about that sort of thing than most.)

Posted by Kat at December 2, 2010 10:12 PM
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