Mania by L.J. Ross

Mania (Alexander Gregory #4)Barbara’s rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Series: Alexander Gregory Thrillers #4
Publication Date: 3/3/22
Period: Contemporary
Number of Pages: 270

I read the first book in this series because I am a big fan of this author’s DCI Ryan series. I enjoyed the book, but I thought Alex needed a bit more humanizing to be a truly relatable character. I skipped from the first book to this fourth one because I wanted to see what sort of character growth Alex may have had between the two books. I definitely liked him better this time and will check out the next book to see how it goes.

In this story, there were plots within plots and they had to be disentangled before the case could be solved. Frankly, I’m not a fan of ‘coincidences’, but the coincidences in this book make for a very nice set-up for probably the next book. So, in this book we got a case to solve and we got some intriguing hints about things to come. Cool!

Over a decade ago acclaimed actor of stage and screen, Sir Nigel Villiers, saved the Old Palace Theater from ruin. He is the consummate performer – always prepared – and his personality just dominates the stage. Then he dominates the stage in an entirely different way – with his dead body. He collapsed onstage in front of a full audience. Dr. Alexander Gregory was in the audience along with his friend and mentor Professor William (Bill) Douglas and he rushed to the stage to help. Despite his best efforts, Villiers died – from poisoning.

When cryptic clues turn up – with references to both Socrates and events that happened in Villiers’ past, the investigators are perplexed. Witnesses lead them to suspect after suspect, but none of them lead anywhere. Then, there is another death with the same type of cryptic clues. Obviously, the deaths are related but is it because of what happened in the past or the present?

With yet another death that has similarities, but is still different, the case becomes yet more complicated. Has the murderer changed his pattern? Are all three murders related? They all knew each other – but still? Whose past holds the correct clues?

We meet a couple of potential love interests for Alex and that could get interesting. At least it can if we don’t play around with a love triangle for a while because then I’d just have to put the series down. William and Alex’s pasts are coming back to haunt them and it should be interesting to see how that goes.

This was an interesting, suspenseful read and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Avid reader/reviewer of historical romance and historical mysteries.

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