5th Irene Kelly Book
ometimes, things at Irene Kelly and Frank Harriman's house get tense. She's a tough investigative reporter in southern California and he's a no-nonsense city detective who likes to hear the bad news first. But their personal and professional lives merge in the fast lane when Frank is kidnapped by Hocus, an unpredictable group of merry pranksters whose tricks turn dirty. Irene is given three days to give them what they want in exchange for her husbandor he dies.
While Hocus sends Irene on one wild goose chase after another for clues about its identity and mission, precious minutes tick by and Frank is nowhere to be found. Then Irene takes matters into her own hands, leaving the police stumbling for a solution, and catapulting herself directly into the line of fire of two madmen with long-held grudges and two ripe victims ready to take the fall.
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"Jan Burke's latest Irene Kelly mystery will keep you on the edge of your beach towel. . . . A skillful writer, Burke weaves a compelling tale, delivered at a fast clip. The suspense is high and the characters complex. Jan Burke is on the fast track."
"There are lots of things to like about Burke's Irene Kelly stories: tense and thoughtful plots, writing that manages to be sharp and sardonic without calling attention to itself and slowing down the action, a Southern California setting that skips all the cliches. . . . [Irene] has to track down the secret of Hocus largely on her own, which she does in the completely credible and exciting manner we've come to expect from this excellent series."
"Burke's Irene Kelly series seems to be on the verge of a breakout to bestsellerdom. . . .[This] plot is jam-packed with unrelenting suspense, and there's plenty of texture, too, what with a charismatic cast of characters and some decidedly unusual psychological overtones. Top-notch reading . . ."
"[An] intelligent and deftly paced thriller-cum-procedural . . . a solid addition to a first-rate series."
"Crisp, crackling prose and immediate suspense. A sure winner."
"One of the best mysteries of the year."
, the characters reach a fullness and richness Burke will be hard-pressed to surpass. Her plotting and writing have always been first-rate. This one, however, gives Kelly a depth of personality that truly delights."
"A well-paced mystery with a heartrending climax."
"Heads above the average thriller. Hocus shines with memorable characters in a front-page story that tears through to its conclusion at a heart-stopping pace."
"Hocus rockets along like a roller coaster on amphetamines. Burke stocks her quirky tale with realistic characters, rapid-fire dialogue and breathtaking plot twists that are both startling and absolutely logical. [A] break-neck-paced thriller . . . a pure pleasure to read."
Flint Michigan Journal
"Memorable characters . . . credible dialogue, a heartbreaking backstory, and a thrilling plot. . . . Hocus
is heads above the average thriller."
Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
"[Gold Medalhighest rating] Intricate, chilling and filled with heart-stopping suspense, Hocus
is a tour-de-force performance guaranteed to make you a Jan Burke fan for life. Magnificent!"
Romantic Times Magazine
"One of the best mystery novels of the year . . . Hocus
offers a multi-layered, complex and satisfying plot; writing which sings in wonderful tones of intelligence, humor and confidence; and a cast of characters and relationships so well-drawn and compelling that this reader felt very much a part of the personal drama as it unfolded. . . .[Burke's] talents overflow!"
Deadly Pleasures Mystery Magazine