Review

In WINGS IN THE DARK by Michael Murphy, Jake and Laura have taken the big step and are on their honeymoon in Hawaii. Pre-Pearl Harbor, white sand beaches, and their friend Amelia Earhart is slated to make her attempt to fly from Hawaii to Los Angeles. You can imagine everyone’s dismay when one of the prominent local businessmen backing the flight with prize money is found shot dead in Amelia’s hangar. Is his murder personal or is there a more sinister reason for his death.

Witty and stylish in the classic Dashiell Hammett tradition, Michael Murphy’s latest high-flying Jake & Laura mystery features a Hawaiian honeymoon that’s interrupted when their friend Amelia Earhart is accused of murder.

Hawaii, 1935. Mystery novelist Jake Donovan and actress Laura Wilson are in gorgeous sun-soaked Hawaii, but their best-laid plans for canoodling on the beach are interrupted by a summons from famed aviatrix Amelia Earhart. It seems a local businessman has been gunned down next to her plane. In just days, the famous pilot intends to fly from Honolulu to Los Angeles, making aviation history over the Pacific. But now, without Jake and Laura’s help, Earhart’s flight might never take off.

Trailing a killer, the newlyweds’ sleuthing leads to a jealous pilot, a cigar-chomping female officer of the “Royalist Militia,” and a notoriously disagreeable lieutenant colonel named Patton. With a sinister killer lurking in the shadows, it’s safe to say the honeymoon is over . . . and the danger has just begun.

The third in the Jake and Laura series finds our sweethearts newly married and enjoying the beaches and sights of Hawaii. When a man is shot to death in Amelia’s hangar she immediately calls on her friend Laura for help. Of course Laura includes Jake and George Putnam, Amelia’s husband, ensures Jake’s services are put to use on Amelia’s behalf.

…it’s always enjoyable to spend a few hours with my favorite historical sleuthing couple…

Poor Jake, caught between a rock and a hard place when he’s threatened with the loss of his career if he doesn’t “assist” the police, whether they want it or not.

There aren’t as many cameo appearances from historical figures or names dropped but when you have Hawaii and Amelia Earhart front and center they’re superfluous.

Jake and Laura run into old acquaintances, one of which has Jake a tad green; who manage to assist and cause more trouble for our reluctant detective newlyweds. Granted, the whodunnit of the mystery won’t tax your grey cells but there’s a wicked twist and one heck of a climactic fight scene. That being said, it’s always enjoyable to spend a few hours with my favorite historical sleuthing couple, regardless.

Anticipating Jake and Laura’s next adventure and celebrity encounters when they return to the mainland.

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About the Reviewer

Ivy Truitt
Transplanted Southerner and avid reader. My tastes are eclectic. I discovered mysteries first then historicals in the era of Kathleen Woodiwiss & Rosemary Rogers. I was never able to finish Gone With the Wind, Scarlett got on my nerves too bad, but I loved Alaina in Ashes in the Wind. I also manage the guest author blog for Manic Readers. In addition to here you can find me on FB, Twitter, Goodreads, Librarything, & Riffle. Always up for talking about books, just gimme a holler!!

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