The world knows Parisian private investigator Aimée Leduc, heroine of 15 mysteries in this New York Times bestselling series, as a très chic, no-nonsense detective—the toughest and most relentless in the City of Lights. Now, author Cara Black dips back in time to reveal how Aimée first came to inherit Leduc Detective . . .
November 1989: Aimée Leduc is in her first year of college at Paris’s preeminent medical school. She lives in a 17th-century apartment that overlooks the Seine with her father, who runs the family detective agency.
But the week the Berlin Wall crumbles, so does Aimée’s life as she knows it. First, someone has sabotaged her lab work, putting her at risk of failing out of the program. Then, she finds out her aristo boyfriend is getting engaged to another woman. And finally, Aimée’s father takes off to Berlin on a mysterious errand. He asks Aimée to help out at the detective agency while he’s gone—as if she doesn’t already have enough to do. But the case Aimée finds herself investigating—a murder linked to a transport truck of Nazi gold that disappeared in the French countryside during the height of World War II—has gotten under her skin. Her heart may not lie in medicine after all—maybe it’s time to think harder about the family business.
Set in 1989, bestseller Black's 16th Aim e Leduc investigation (after 2015's Murder on the Champs des Mars) is a prequel that tells the intriguing story of Aim e's debut as a detective. When Aim e's father, Jean-Claude, travels to Germany on business around the time of the fall of the Berlin Wall, he leaves Aim e, a first-year medical student who's struggling with academic failure and her boyfriend leaving her for another woman, temporarily in charge of the family-owned detective agency in Paris. Elise Pelletier, who claims to be Jean-Claude's second cousin, brings Aim e her first case. Elise wants to find the woman whose name and phone number were on a matchbook in the pocket of her dead father, Bruno, who was discovered tied and bound with a bullet in his head under the Pont des Invalides. As Aim e investigates, she becomes enmeshed in the murky history of the murder of four German soldiers in Vichy, France, during WWII. Series fans will enjoy learning more about Aim e's mysterious past.