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Local author Chuck Greaves returns with new mystery

Regional author Chuck Greaves recently released “The Chimera Club,” his fourth novel in the Jack MacTaggart mystery series. The previous three MacTaggart books have all been finalists for awards.

Jack MacTaggart is a Los Angeles trial lawyer much like his creator, Greaves. Greaves’ vast experience brings veracity to his character and his actions.

As “The Chimera Club” begins, MacTaggert is enjoying a much needed vacation in Hawaii when he comes across an image that stirs a memory that he shares with his current companion. His opening reads much like that classic film noir, “The Maltese Falcon,” when the stunning beauty Mae Gallagher walks into his office and asks MacTaggart to represent her father. Mae is a former model who is now the owner of a trendy LA nightclub called The Chimera Club.

It turns out that Mae’s father, Jimmy Kwan, who is known as the “Chinese Bernie Madoff,” swindled his many clients, including his only child, out of millions of dollars and has now been arrested for murder. This headliner of a murder is a Hollywood attention grabber. Ari Goldstone, film producer, was found brutally murdered and naked in an upscale hotel room. Goldstone was being sued by a group of women called “Avenging Angels” and was accused of being a sexual predator who had abused and ruined the lives of many young women. Harvey Weinstein comes to mind, although he is probably not the only movie industry executive to abuse his power and position.

If you go

WHAT: Chuck Greaves will discuss “The Chimera Club” and sign copies of the book.

WHEN: 6 p.m. Wednesday.

WHERE: Maria’s Bookshop, 960 Main Ave.

MORE INFORMATION: Visit https://bit.ly/3qHAh2k.

After MacTaggart agrees to represent Kwan, he is puzzled why Kwan is even under arrest because he was reportedly half a world away in Hong Kong at the time of the murder. Fortunately, MacTaggart is friends with the district attorney and is able to discover that forensic evidence definitely puts Kwan at the scene of the crime.

In an attempt to solve this dilemma, MacTaggart sends his investigator to discover the truth, because the prosecutor seems to think that Kwan somehow was able to fool the system and slipped in and out of the country undetected. As the investigation proceeds, additional facts do nothing to clear up MacTaggart’s conflicting theories.

As MacTaggart tries his best to puzzle out a solution, he again becomes romantically involved with a woman who is inappropriate for him. At least, lucky for him, she is not his client. Events turn deadly serious when the body count rises and MacTaggart himself becomes a target for an unknown attacker. The solution to Goldstone’s murder eludes MacTaggart as he tries to keep out of harm’s way.

Greaves uses his vast experience to craft a convoluted plot with a wealth of little known physical facts to great effect, keeping readers guessing to the final chapter. His dialogue is spot on and uses droll humor to spice his conversations. Greaves’ attention to detail helps enrich the story, keeping readers keen to keep the pages turning. “The Chimera Club” is a welcome addition to the adventures of Jack MacTaggart, attorney-at-law.

Leslie Doran is a retired teacher, freelance writer and former New Mexican who claims Durango as her forever home.