Tuesday, October 27, 2009

High Crimes on the Magical Plane by Kris Neri

Samantha Brennan "Went through life in search of naked emperors to snicker at." As a fake psychic, she thought she knew all of the tricks. But, she didn't know anything about Celtic goddesses, shape-shifters, flower fairies, or murder. She'll learn about all of that in Kris Neri's fun mystery, High Crimes on the Magical Plane.

Molly Claire was a movie star who had been stalked by four guys dressed as clowns. When Samantha Brennan saw a clown car leaving the parking garage where Claire lived, she saw a way to capitalize on that knowledge. She worked her way into Claire's apartment, only to find a dead man there. But, Samantha's plans were foiled by FBI Special Agent Annabelle Haggerty. Imagine the shock of a fake psychic when she sees an actual vision of the missing woman. Imagine Samantha's shock when she realizes she's seeing those visions because Annabelle is an actual Celtic goddess with unusual powers. And, Annabelle can use Samantha to channel those visions.

It's a good thing that Samantha's aura is "Very happy, carefree...But really simple and childlike." She's able to accept gods and goddesses and winking gnomes, but she's a better student of human nature than she gives herself credit for. And, when Molly Claire shows up at bank robberies, à la Patty Hearst, Samantha is dragged further into the investigation. And, what is Molly's connection to an exhibit of Egyptian art? Samantha wanted to be the center of attention, but she hadn't wanted the attention of someone powerful enough to kill clowns, and force an actress into a life of crime. Samantha thought she was just a fake psychic, but Annabelle Haggerty brought out hidden strengths in her.

This Samantha Brennan and Annabelle Haggerty mystery was full of surprises, humor, and a little romance. The two women are a complimentary pair; Samantha, so light-hearted, harmless, and, at times, clueless, and the powerful Celtic goddess, Annabelle, who takes her job so seriously. It takes two women with a psychic link to solve the crimes that could send Los Angeles up in flames. High Crimes on the Magical Plane may have started out with clown cars and a fake psychic, but it rushes into danger and excitement at a fast pace. Neri's mystery is suspenseful, and fun, with an original pair of heroines.

Kris Neri's website is www.krisneri.com

High Crimes on the Magical Plane by Kris Neri. Red Coyote Press, ©2009. ISBN 9780976673354 (paperback), 224p.

***FTC Full Disclosure - Kris Neri, one of the Desert Sleuths, will appear at the Velma Teague Library on Saturday, Dec. 5. Her publicist sent me this review copy, in hopes of a review.


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Wow! Now THIS is a different type of mystery. You've really found some very creative mystery plotters lately, Lesa. This one is so unusual that I'll have to look it up.

Mystery Writing is Murder

Lesa said...

And, Elizabeth? You're one of those creative mystery plotters yourself. This was a different type of mystery, and I started out not liking Samantha. But, Neri sure changed my opinion.

Kris Neri said...

Lesa, Google Alerts and your DotL post alerted me to this review. Thanks for giving HIGH CRIMES and Samantha & Annabelle a chance. I'm so glad you liked it, and I really appreciate the opportunity. Obviously, I built in lots of room for growth in Samantha! ;)

Lesa said...

Hi Kris!

I did like it, and it's going to be fun to watch Samantha. She grows on you!