||October 8, 2013
A cozy mystery combining romance, food, art, wine, and Afghan orphan girls set in Provence France.
Price: $13.99 (eBook)
Download to your Kindle (eBook)
What happens when the very beautiful and sexy Maria Brooks, now Elena Johnson, a woman hiding out in Provence from the California legal authorities, meets Jordan Kramer, a handsome art theft detective from Los Angeles?
He's looking for stolen California paintings reportedly for sale in Provence. She's trying to stay under the radar. Both share a love for food and wine. Will Jordan find Pierre, the French chef who's suspected of being the art thief? And who are the young Afghan girls hiding out in his parents' barn?
If you liked Dianne Harman's award-winning first novel, Blue Coyote Motel, you're going to love Coyote in Provence. Great food, art, and romantic suspense at its best!
Blue Coyote Motel, the first book in the Coyote Series, was a quarterfinalist in Amazon's Breakthrough Novel Award contest and a Goodreads Psychological Thriller of the Month. Coyote in Provence continues the story of Maria, the captivating character in the trilogy.
From time to time she wondered what she would do for the rest of her life now that she was living in Provence. She pushed those thoughts aside while she struggled with the symptoms of withdrawal from the drug known as Freedom. She’d grown reliant on the drug and without it, she was experiencing bouts of depression. She felt lost and worthless as she tried to get the last of it out of her system.
I was lucky enough to get an advance copy of "Coyote in Provence" by Dianne Harman, the long awaited sequel to her excellent novel "Blue Coyote Motel" and I am pleased to have found it just as remarkable and enjoyable as the first one.
Maria, the ageing Mexican beauty and widow of an American scientist, is hiding in France under a new identity. Harman did a splendid job at tying everything up at the end of the last book but manages to unravel the story again easily. Maria is still ambitious and somewhat of a loose agent who won't be satisfied with a boring and secluded life and therefore attracts people and problems. Of all people she falls for a detective from Southern California on a field trip to locate stolen art.
A separate narrative introduces a filthily rich Afghan business woman with a big heart. I don't want to give away much more of the plot to avoid spoilers. All I will say is that said woman is an amazing character and a great and intriguing addition to the already well composed and wonderful cast. Harman really knows how to write entertaining and thoughtful stories with characters caught in the grey areas of morality and legality. With clever juxtaposition and sharp dialogue Harman makes several important points about those (too often contradictory) concepts.
I was impressed how the narratives then come together and how the themes from book one returned so naturally and organically into this story. As far as sequels go this is masterfully crafted and particularly pleasing as the plot is not predictable and the book contains a lot of new elements, yet retains the original character of the series / trilogy (Maybe we can persuade Harman to go beyond the third book?).
I found this a gripping and compulsive read and - although I really hate to use this worn out phrase in reviews - I cannot wait for the next book to find out more about how the remaining issues will be resolved.
A great equal to book one and a real treat.
Harman Delivers Again!
I just finished Dianne Harman's latest book, Coyote in Provence, the second in her Blue Coyote series, and I'm very glad that she has developed Coyote into a series. It's a great read that not only extends the narrative from Blue Coyote, but opens up on several new fronts. To avoid the risk of revealing too much of the storyline, let's just say that readers will be surprised and delighted with the journey Harman takes her readers on. These new pathways will serve her well as the series progresses.
The beautiful Maria from the first book is now widowed and keeping a low profile in France with a new identity. Searching for purpose, she begins working at a local restaurant and enjoys a new relationship with a detective who is working a case focused on stolen art. Harman does a nice job using the local geography and food to establish the book's initial setting and tone and these elements seamlessly integrate with the burgeoning romance.
A completely separate storyline is introduced that initially surprised me. But it's handled very well and, by the end of the book, readers will be satisfied with the way Harman has woven these disparate elements together. It also needs to be pointed out that great characters abound in this worthy sequel to her successful Blue Coyote Motel.
A five star, not to be missed offering from Dianne Harman, an author who continues to deliver the goods!
A light read with deep undercurrents
Having read and enjoyed the first book in the series, Blue Coyote Motel, I was more than delighted to get my hands on this book. At 200 pages, this book is just the right size and zips along quite nicely. Although the story is set in Provence situated in the charming French countryside, a good deal of the action takes place in Los Angeles and Afghanistan.
The author's description of Provence makes one want to book the next flight to Marseilles and the food described makes one's mouth water. On the deeper side of things, the author covers some very disturbing facts about atrocities carried out against women in underdeveloped countries and does a great job of blending that into the book.
One of the characters in the book has a private jet and you can do a lot of things if you have one, some of those activities are described very nicely in the book. As in the first book, this book too covers a range of human emotions. At times life will thrust a certain burden on you, to which you just can't say no, and executing that request/burden can create even more issues down the line.
Slade, a detective, is a class act, straight out of the movies and his English would make the Queen swoon. Maria who is running from the law, whose name is now Elena, falls for a man from Southern California who happens to visit Provence on business, law enforcement business. As always Maria is unable to control her insatiable desire to look young, a desire or rather an illness or a delusional state of mind present in almost every woman on the planet. As fate would have it, she finds someone who can make the drug for her, yet again.
A light read with deep undercurrents running throughout, it will really open your eyes to a number of things that normally don't see the light of the day. A wonderful book.
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