A muggy July weekend in Toronto. A house party with a disparate assortment of guests. A tired police inspector and his rookie partner. And murder.
“Reminiscent of the best Agatha Christie had to offer… Humor, complications, and characters so real that you can just about touch them and smell their sweat.” —Midwest Book Review
The first in a classic police procedural series of traditional whodunits set in contemporary Toronto.
Homicide inspector Paul Manziuk wants nothing more than a few days R and R to recharge his brain.
Constable Jacqueline Ryan believes she owes her promotion to the Homicide Squad to being a black woman, and that she’ll do a better job of proving she belongs there if she can avoid working with the no-nonsense, intimidating Manziuk.
Senior corporate lawyer George Brodie and his wife Ellen want their son to marry a nice girl and settle down. To that end, Ellen invited the auburn-haired daughter of a distant relative for the July long weekend. But her plans go sadly awry when George invites his junior partners and their wives, and their son brings along his roommate—a ladies’ man.
Jillian Martin, the spoiled young wife of one of George’s partners, looks forward to being the center of attention at the house party. But first her husband insists they take along her disgusting older sister; then an old flame seems to be more interested by a boring religious do-gooder and an experienced older man makes fun of her. The last straw is when the jealous wife of another partner dares to challenge her.
After Jillian's lifeless body is found in one of the gardens on the estate, chaos ensues.
Manziuk and Ryan are given the case, and it isn’t long before Manziuk feels he’s been thrust into an Agatha Christie novel where everyone has a motive and it’s necessary to sort through numerous baffling clues and conflicting alibis to find the truth. However, he’s no Hercule Poirot, and Ryan is definitely not Miss Marple.
The Manziuk and Ryan Mysteries in order:
-Shaded Light: The Case of the Tactless Trophy Wife
- Glitter of Diamonds: The Case of the Reckless Radio Host
- Shadow of a Butterfly: The Case of the Harmless Old Woman (coming May 15th)
Short stories by J. A. Menzies
-“The Case of the Sneezing Accountant: A Manziuk and Ryan Short Story”
-“The Day Time Stood Still”
-“They Can’t Take That Away From Me”
-“Revenge So Sweet”
*Originally published as Shaded Light by N. J. Lindquist
Customer ReviewsSee All
The book starts with narratives of the background of the main characters, making it easy to remember them as they merge into the plot. The personalities are diverse enough that gathering them in one social weekend event guarantees no shortage of conflicts and drama, of discord and concord. They are assembled against the backdrop of a great many rooms both inside the great big house and the expansive outside, nearly all within a great big gated compound.
Much material is devoted to intense scrutiny of the activities of all characters except the real offender. Motive is loosely reintroduced much later, giving the impression of an afterthought.
The book is a fairly good read. Scenes and conversations flow vividly and cohesively in large part, sufficient to keep the reader focused on the course of events.
Very clean and very good writing for a whodunnit! Couldn’t put it down until it was finished.