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Monday 15 April 2019

‘Allmen and the Pink Diamond’ by Martin Suter

Translated by Steph Morris
Published by New Vessel Press,
5 March 2019.
ISBN: 978-1-939931-63-4 (PB)

Johann Friedrich von Allmen is a gentleman with a taste for luxury that far outweighs his income. He has had to down-scale his lifestyle and is waited upon by his long-suffering Guatemalan butler, Carlos, who helps to keep penury at bay by acting as a gardener for the trust company that bought Allmen’s villa. Allmen continues to support the lifestyle he cannot afford and will not abandon by selling off his valuable antiques and by setting up a detective agency, Allmen International Enquiries. However, despite its grandiose name and one major success, the agency is a mediocre affair that gets a small income from occasionally recovering stolen property.

When Allmen International Enquiries is commissioned to recover a stolen pink diamond of remarkable value, Allmen is delighted at the change in his fortunes, especially as pursuing the mysterious Russian who is suspected of having made off with the jewel means that he can stay at a luxurious hotel and play the part of an exceedingly wealthy man. Allmen is a man of taste and sophistication and he rarely considers where the money to pay for his luxuries is coming from, if indeed it is available at all. However, all is not as it seems and Allmen is not the only person following the trail of the Russian. Soon it becomes clear that the price of failure may well be more than just the loss of money.

Allmen and the Pink Diamond is the second book in the series featuring Allmen and Carlos. It has an interesting plot, some exotic and luxurious settings and glimpses of a lifestyle that few people will ever experience. Allmen is an intriguing but not particularly likeable protagonist. He is a man of sophistication and culture, who is accustomed to the best of everything and knows how to get it. However, he is a man of contradictions: as a boy he was educated at Charterhouse School, (and often calls upon his wealthy ex-schoolfellows for favours) and yet was brought up on his parents’ farm, an environment he hated.

Allmen and the Pink Diamond has some engaging descriptions of exotic locations, flashes of sly humour and intriguingly eccentric characters. A quirky and fast-paced read.
Reviewer: Carol Westron

Martin Suter was born 29 February 1948 in Zurich. Suter has published fourteen novels, written four stage plays, and seven screenplays, for which he received various awards. Suter worked previously as a copywriter and creative director in advertising before he decided to fully concentrate on his writing career in 1991.He is married and lives in Spain and Guatemala.

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

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