Sunday, October 22, 2023

The House of Love and Death

The House of Love and Death by Andrew Klavan
10/31/23; 312 pages
Mysterious Press
Cameron Winter #3

The House of Love and Death by Andrew Klavan is a very highly recommended third mystery in the Cameron Winter series. This is an absolutely excellent addition to an already exceptional series!

After reading about the murder of four people at a wealthy family's home in the Chicago suburbs, ex-spy-turned-English professor, Cameron Winter, investigates. The only survivor is a young boy, while his parents, older sister, and nanny were all killed. Winter has a "strange habit of mind" that allows him to see connections or suspect facts that have been left out or overlooked at a crime scene. He was previously a trained operative, so this extra-special understanding of human nature has been developed over time. The police are looking for the easiest, expedient solution to the crime, but Winter knows there is something more.

In-between Winter's investigation into the current case are psychotherapy sessions with his therapist Margaret Whitaker where he recaps his most troubling cases to her. This provides additional depth and development to Winter's character as he confronts his own past and failings.

The House of Love and Death is an absolutely riveting, un-put-downable mystery that only becomes more intense and complex as the narrative unfolds. In an already excellent series, this investigation of Cameron Winter is the best to date. I was totally immersed in the action. Winter may know what his "strange habit of mind" is sensing as he investigates and it is sheer pleasure in following along as he pieces the clues together. As the novel progresses, the danger to Winter increases while the suspense and tension also multiply. The House of Love and Death is completely engrossing and riveting throughout.

Cameron Winter is a fully realized, complex and developed character who will garner sympathy and compassion from readers. He is intelligent and tenacious while investigating and following what he senses is really going on. It is clear that Winter is working through the demons from his past while using his abilities to solve a current mystery.

This can be read as a stand-alone novel, but readers will likely want to read the previous Cameron Winter novels after The House of Love and Death. The complicated plot becomes increasingly sophisticated as more information is revealed and Winter uncovers or senses additional information.

I love this series and anxiously await another novel featuring Cameron Winter. (I would appreciate it if Klavan didn't leave me crying again, twice this time, over events in the narrative.)

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Mysterious Press via NetGalley.

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