Requiem for a Gypsy
A Jana Matinova Investigation Set in Slovakia
By Michael Genelin
(Soho Crime, Hardcover, 9781569479575, 356pp.)
Publication Date: July 12, 2011
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When the wife of one of Slovakia's most prominent businessmen is killed in a very public assassination, it looks like the bullets were meant for her husband. But could the wife of Oto Bogan have actually been one of the primary targets? And where has Bogan gone? Both he and his son have disappeared without a trace. Commander Jana Matinova was present at the party where the shooting took place, and she was the one who pushed Bogan out of the line of fire. As a witness to the crime, she's being told to stay away from the case, but her Colonel knows that he needs his best investigator on it.
Jana must push through her own government's secretiveness and intransigence to discover what connects the murder of Klara Boganova to an anonymous man run down in Paris, a dead Turk with an icepick in his eye, and an international network of bank accounts linking back to the Second World War. The key to the case may lie with a mysterious, vagabond girl who has attached herself to Jana and who seems to be connected to the notorious international criminal Makine, AKA Koba. To solve the case and stop an ongoing series of murders, Jana must travel to Berlin and Paris and look back into the darkest period of Slovak history.
Michael Genelin is a graduate of UCLA and UCLA Law School. He has served as a consultant for the US State Department and USAID in Central Europe, Africa, Asia, and Haiti. He lives with his wife in Paris.
“Rich in compelling plot twists and sobering history lessons. It also showcases Genelin’s skills as a writer.”—Washington Post
“[Genelin] depicts vividly the effects of old-style corruption on the burgeoning democratic society in present-day Slovakia, and can weave together a fast-moving whodunit populated with flamboyant characters who flit through the European capitals…Every character, major or minor in the plot, just about jumps off the page. Mr. Genelin seems incapable of writing a dull page.”—Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Genelin once again makes present-day Slovakia a compelling backdrop for murder in his superb fourth novel featuring Police Commander Jana Matinova (after 2010's The Magician's Accomplice).... Genelin's no-nonsense lead will appeal to fans of strong female detectives such as Kinsey Millhone, V.I. Warshawski, and Jane Tennison.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“Genelin's writing flows effortlessly as he propels Matinova from one crisis to the next.”—Post and Courier
“Jana, one of the more intriguing characters in fictional thrillerdom, makes fallibility seem like a virtue.”—Kirkus Reviews
“This is one of the better international mystery series currently available. Make sure to suggest it to readers who also enjoy the European police novels of Helene Tursten and Donna Leon.”—Booklist
“An engaging read, full of deftly drawn characters who must somehow see through a mazy reality that conceals the contrast of light and dark in shadows, behind screens, and in the rooted passions of the human heart.”—ForeWord Reviews