Red Canvas by Andrew Nance

Red Canvas by Andrew Nance
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing, LLC
Genre: Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Contemporary
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Snowdrop

In the seaside city of San Marco, Florida, Lise Norwood spends her days serving papers and her nights spying on cheating spouses. But before she became a PI, she was an art major at San Marco University. So when the local police ask her to consult on a murder case in which the victim was posed to resemble a classic Greek sculpture, Lise dusts off her art history degree and joins the task force.

As the artistic madman known as Michelangelo continues to copy more works of art, Lise starts her own investigation into the gruesome killings. When she gets too far, she’s fired from the case.
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Being told to step back only spurs her to dig deeper. Her inquiries take an ugly and personal turn when Michelangelo threatens to make her his next bloody masterpiece. And the key to the case might be a stolen piece of artwork very few know exists.

When I first saw this mystery dealt with art, I immediately thought of a few others I’ve read. They were dry. Don’t know any other way to describe it. Not this one, though. This one is fast moving and easy to read. It’s humorous and has plenty of action. Analise, or Lise for short, is a sassy Private Investigator and has a background in art. Is she an investigator dealing in art fraud or theft? Not exactly, she’s still at the “stalking cheating husbands” stage of her business. This death and art case sort of falls into her lap. She most certainly sees art she never thought she’d see and it’s not the kind of art you see walking through a museum.

This is an author that not only creates the kind of characters I like, the kind you can see, the kind you feel you can know. He also keeps you right on the edge of your seat. I was going to tell you that he threw one red herring after another into the story but that would sound as if he added misleading clues. His writing was never unclear. He was just very good at creating turns in the road so fast I lost my balance, at least in my thinking. So did Lise for that matter. At least until the painting made sense.

Rarely do I give 5-star ratings. 5-star books must be special and this book, well…it’s special.

A great story with lots of suspense. This is Book 1 of a series titled “A Lise Norwood Mystery”. I hope we see book 2 soon.

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