A sometimes-amusing but often disturbing indictment of how the elderly are neglected, ignored, and treated like children by...


Two elderly women battle stereotypes and neglect in their fight to stay alive.

Siiri Kettunen and Irma Lännenleimu—who live in neighboring apartments in Helsinki’s Sunset Grove senior living home—decide on a whim to investigate some of the strange happenings there by forming The Lavender Ladies Detective Agency. Tero, the cook at the home, was recently found dead, and Siiri wants to know what happened. But that’s not the only thing that disturbs her. Personal belongings vanish, more pills are prescribed than seem necessary, and the clients are always getting billed for things they didn’t order. Even though the Lavender Ladies are in their 90s and perhaps forgetful, Siiri still feels something’s wrong. A war veteran is assaulted in the shower, and when his friend Reino complains, he’s hauled off to the dementia ward. Mika Korhonen, one of the young men wearing Hell’s Angels leather jackets at Tero’s funeral, helps the ladies while pursuing his own investigation. As Irma’s complaints about the home escalate, so do her medications, and she’s soon sent to the dementia ward. Left on her own, Siiri continues to ride the trams to get away from the home and stoke the memories of her life when she had one. When Siiri’s own dosage is increased, she hides the pills instead of taking them and, with Mika’s help, hatches a plan to free Irma from the dementia ward. Siiri’s only daughter is in a convent and Irma’s large family rarely visits, though they’re all too eager to divvy up her possessions and sell her apartment. So Siiri fights her own health problems and failing memory to help her friend and herself to escape the stifling world of Sunset Grove.

A sometimes-amusing but often disturbing indictment of how the elderly are neglected, ignored, and treated like children by the powers that be and consigned to homes that do little to enrich their lives and may even hasten their deaths.

Pub Date: June 1, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4472-8932-6

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

Review Posted Online: May 16, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet



One of her best. Poirot, again on vacation, falls foul of a murder on board a Nile river steamer, followed by two successive murders, obviously connected. A sophisticated group, an ingenious plot, clever deduction, swift-paced narrative. A little romance on the side lends glamour. First rate entertainment.

Pub Date: Feb. 8, 1938

ISBN: 0062073559

Page Count: 354

Publisher: Dodd, Mead

Review Posted Online: Sept. 20, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1938

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Proficient but eminently predictable. Amid all the time shifts and embedded backstories, the most surprising feature is how...

Reader Votes

  • Readers Vote
  • 17

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

  • New York Times Bestseller


A convicted killer’s list of five people he wants dead runs the gamut from the wife he’s already had murdered to franchise heroine Ali Reynolds.

Back in the day, women came from all over to consult Santa Clarita fertility specialist Dr. Edward Gilchrist. Many of them left his care happily pregnant, never dreaming that the father of the babies they carried was none other than the physician himself, who donated his own sperm rather than that of the handsome, athletic, disease-free men pictured in his scrapbook. When Alexandra Munsey’s son, Evan, is laid low by the kidney disease he’s inherited from his biological father and she returns to Gilchrist in search of the donor’s medical records, the roof begins to fall in on him. By the time it’s done falling, he’s serving a life sentence in Folsom Prison for commissioning the death of his wife, Dawn, the former nurse and sometime egg donor who’d turned on him. With nothing left to lose, Gilchrist tattoos himself with the initials of five people he blames for his fall: Dawn; Leo Manuel Aurelio, the hit man he’d hired to dispose of her; Kaitlyn Todd, the nurse/receptionist who took Dawn’s place; Alex Munsey, whose search for records upset his apple cart; and Ali Reynolds, the TV reporter who’d helped put Alex in touch with the dozen other women who formed the Progeny Project because their children looked just like hers. No matter that Ali’s been out of both California and the news business for years; Gilchrist and his enablers know that revenge can’t possibly be served too cold. Wonder how far down that list they’ll get before Ali, aided once more by Frigg, the methodical but loose-cannon AI first introduced in Duel to the Death (2018), turns on them?

Proficient but eminently predictable. Amid all the time shifts and embedded backstories, the most surprising feature is how little the boundary-challenged AI, who gets into the case more or less inadvertently, differs from your standard human sidekick with issues.

Pub Date: April 2, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-5101-9

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Feb. 19, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2019

Did you like this book?