The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes

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David Handler’s latest mystery features the elegant Stewart (Hoagy) Hoag, a one-time successful novelist, turned ghostwriter and amateur sleuth, who solves crimes with style and panache with the help of his faithful sidekick, his anchovy loving basset hound, Lulu.

“The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes” (William Morrow, 279 pages) reads like a classic Hollywood mystery, though updated a bit.

The famous novelist, Richard Aintree, who disappeared twenty years ago, has been sending letters to his two daughters.

One of Aintree’s daughters, Monette, lives in a mansion in Los Angeles. Hoagy is sent out to the land of film and fantasy to get the story.

But things are a bit complicated for Hoagy as he had an affair with the other Aintree sister – Reggie.

The family reunion between the two Aintree sisters takes a nightmarish turn when Monette Aintree’s estranged husband, Patrick, a popular television star is shot to death. Though the estranged wife, Monette, confesses to the killing, claiming it was self-defense, the shooting involved two sets of gunshots.

Hoagy suspects the crime was anything but a simple case of self-defense and in true classic Hollywood fashion he assembles all the suspects back at the mansion for a revelation of the killer.

Charming and witty, with a touch of gritty realism, David Handler’s “The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes” is a modern take on the old-fashioned mystery featuring an endearing pair of amateur detectives, Stewart “Hoagy” Hoag and his lovable pooch, Lulu.