Since becoming an unlikely millionaire and quitting the St. Paul
Police Department, Rushmore McKenzie has been working as an
unlicensed private investigator, basically doing favors for friends
and people in need. But even for him, this latest job is unusual.
He's been asked to find a stolen Stradivarius, known as the Countess
Borromeo, that only the violinist seems to want him to find.
Stolen from a locked room in a B&B in the violinist's former
hometown of Bayfield, Wisconsin, the violin is valued at $4 million
and is virtually irreplaceable. But the foundation that owns it
and their insurance company refuses to pay the thief (or thieves)
for its safe return. However, Paul Duclos, the violinist who has
played it for the past twelve years, is desperate to get it back
and offers to pay the thief out of his own pocket.
Though its not his usual sort of case, McKenzie is intrigued and
decides to help, which means going against the local police, the
insurance company, the FBI's Art Crime division, and his own lawyer's
advice. And, as he quickly learns, there's a lot more going on
than the mere theft of a priceless instrument.
"A Stradivarius goes missing and all hell breaks loose in the
thirteenth entry in Edgar-winning Housewright’s very strong Mac
McKenzie series... Though the novels are loosely based in
Minneapolis/St. Paul, the series makes great use of the variegated
landscapes—filled with opportunities for crime and escape—of
Minnesota and Wisconsin... Greatly enhancing the story are the
fascinating details Housewright provides on the history and
design of these priceless instruments."
-- Booklist starred review
The brazen theft of a Stradivarius violin known as the Countess
Borromeo, valued at $4 million, provides Rushmore McKenzie with
some ethical challenges in Housewright’s entertaining 13th mystery
featuring the unlicensed St. Paul, Minn., PI (after 2015’s
Unidentified Woman #15)... The charming lead enhances the crime
puzzle, which is both complex and logical."
-- Publisher's Weekly