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Thursday 3 May 2018

‘Fakes and Lies’ by Jane A Adams

Published by Severn House,
31st January 2018.
ISBN: 978-0-7278-8769-6

Freddie Jones was a talented and popular artist, but he had also been a skilled and successful art forger, who provided convincing provenances for the paintings he had forged. However, after spending time in prison, Freddie had abandoned forgery and earned his living as a legitimate artist. Or so his daughter, Bee, believes. But she is sure that something was going on in his life that he was afraid of and, when Freddie dies suddenly, she is certain that he has been killed, even though she has no evidence.

Bee turns for help to Freddie’s friend, Bob, and his wife, Annie, and through them meets Bob’s apprentice, Patrick. In his turn, Patrick introduces Bee to his friend Naomi Blake, a former Detective Inspector until an accident robbed her of her sight. Despite her blindness, Naomi relishes an investigative challenge and contacts a former colleague who is leading the investigation into the murder of a well-known art gallery owner. The connection between this murder and Bee’s suspicions about Freddie’s death is that the only thing stolen from the art gallery after the killing was a portfolio of Freddie’s work, one of the least valuable items in a gallery full of works of art.

In another strand of the story, Binnie, a vicious young Narcissist, is terrorising his childhood friend, Sian, to help him commit crimes and to witness his power as he carries out the commands of his ruthless art collector boss. Sian does not want to be with Binnie, but she is cowed by his threats to harm her parents – threats that Sian knows that he will not hesitate to carry out because she has already had evidence of his violent behaviour.  This violence accelerates as Binnie and his puppet-master are prepared to go to any lengths to gain possession of the secret that Freddie hid so well, and Bee, Patrick and Sian are all in danger of becoming collateral damage in a vicious, dangerous game.

Fakes and Lies is the tenth book in the series featuring Naomi Blake and I wished that I had started earlier in the series as there was clearly a lot of back-story for many of the characters and their relationships. Despite this, the characterisation was good, and the main protagonists were engaging, especially the innocent young people out of their depth and surrounded by ruthless villains. On the other side of the law, the Narcissistic, sociopath Binnie was truly chilling. The plot was clever, and the art details were fascinating. An interesting and enjoyable read.
Reviewer: Carol Westron

Jane A Adams was born in Leicestershire, where she still lives. She has a degree in Sociology and has held a variety of jobs including lead vocalist in a folk-rock band. She enjoys pen and ink drawing; martial arts and her ambition is to travel the length of the Silk Road by motorbike. Her first book, The Greenway, was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey Award in 1995 and for the Author's Club Best First Novel Award. Jane writes several series.  Her first series featured Mike Croft. Several books featuring DS Ray Flowers. Seven titles featuring blind Naoimi Blake, and six titles featuring Rina Martin. Her most ret series is set between the two World Wars and featuring Detective Inspector Henry Johnstone and his sergeant, Micky Hitchens. Jane has also written several standalone novels. She is married with two children.
Carol Westron is a successful short story writer and a Creative Writing teacher.  She is the moderator for the cosy/historical crime panel,
The Deadly Dames. 
Her crime novels are set both in contemporary and Victorian times. 
The Terminal Velocity of Cats the first in her Scene of Crimes novels, was published July 2013. Carol recently gave an interview to Mystery People. To read the interview click on the link below.

To read a review of Carol latest book Strangers and Angels click on the title.

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