Denise Mina

Book - 2022

While on vacation with their blended family, Anna McDonald and Fin Cohen take off to try to solve the case of a shocking kidnapping.

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MYSTERY/Mina Denise
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Mina, Denise. Anna and Fin ; bk. 2.
Detective and mystery fiction
Thrillers (Fiction)
New York : Mulholland Books/Little, Brown and Company 2022.
First edition
Item Description
Sequel to: Conviction.
"Published simultaneously in the UK by Harvill Secker, an imprint of Penguin Random House UK"--Title page verso.
Physical Description
293 pages ; 25 cm
Main Author
Denise Mina (author)
Review by Booklist Review

True-crime podcasters Anna McDonald and Fin Cohen are back for a second season (after Conviction, 2019), this time digging into the connection between a missing urban explorer and the reemergence of a coveted Christian relic. The Voyniche Casket, believed to hold proof of Christ's ascension, turned up in a Paris auction soon after it was spotted in Lisa Lee's video of an abandoned French chateau. After shooting Anna and Fin a cryptic email, Lisa Lee vanished. Anna and Fin are well-acquainted with the weird turns their projects can take, so when South African smuggler Bram van Wyk offers to bankroll their investigation and link them with the black marketeer and defrocked priest whom he claims may have killed to keep the casket hidden, they go with it. They'll get answers, but not until after murky agendas lead them to a deadly Schrodinger's Cat scenario. A sophisticated, well-plotted entry in Mina's newest whodunit series, which has a lighter tone than the author's Paddy Meehan and Alex Morrow novels, but readers will recognize her fight-the-power commentary.

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

In Edgar finalist Mina's rambling sequel to 2019's Conviction, Anna McDonald and Fin Cohen, a pair of podcasters whose spouses left each of them for one another, go looking for Lisa Lee, a little-watched maker of videos about urban exploring who went missing after discovering a small silver casket in an abandoned French chateau. Now, the casket, an artifact whose legend purports to offer proof of Pontius Pilate's conversion to Christianity and the resurrection itself, is up for auction in Paris, and Anna and Fin decide to head there to investigate Lisa's whereabouts. They're contacted by Bram van Wyk, a mysterious South African art expert who knows the casket's recent history and offers to help the podcasters track down Lisa and find out how the object made its way to a Parisian auction house, where deep-pocketed religious collectors are ready to bid fortunes to possess it. A long, confusing journey through Europe ensues, and it becomes clear Bram is in deep trouble if he doesn't wind up with the casket. Muddled subplots eventually reveal a murky connection to a real-life crime. This convoluted art heist caper isn't one of Mina's best. Agent: Henry Dunow, Dunow, Carlson & Lerner Literary. (July)

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved Review by Library Journal Review

In this follow-up to the Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club pick Conviction, YouTube star Lisa Lee goes missing after inadvertently revealing a secret about a deserted chateau she's visiting, which she busily hyped to her fans. True-crime podcaster Anna McDonald leaps to track events with fellow podcaster Fin Cohen, which allows her to escape a damp, miserable vacation that oddly includes her ex-husband and his obnoxious new partner. With a 35,000-copy first printing.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Kirkus Book Review

A missing woman and a rediscovered religious artifact drive a fast-paced chase by two podcasters and a possible con man. When Anna McDonald and Fin Cohen leave Glasgow for a family weekend at a rental house, she expects minor disasters. She and Fin are work partners in a popular true-crime podcast, but their domestic situation is intertwined as well--her ex and his ex are now a couple, and all of them are co-parenting Anna's two young daughters. They all get along, but a new addition to the mix is Sofia, Fin's young, pretty, poison-tongued girlfriend. So Anna is glad to be distracted by news of the disappearance of a young woman named Lisa Lee--a story that's a prime candidate for their podcast. Lisa is part of an online community centered on urban exploring, UrbEx for short--people who break into abandoned properties and livestream what's inside. Lisa vanished from her home near Glasgow shortly after she aired a visit to a creepy French chateau full of religious artifacts. And now one of those artifacts, a sealed silver box, is making news. It's about to be sold at a Paris auction house, and there are rising rumors that it's a long-missing object called the Voyniche Casket, said to contain a mysterious proof of the resurrection of Christ. The seller is anonymous; the question for Anna and Fin is what its sale has to do with Lisa's disappearance. Then Fin gets a text from someone named Bram van Wyk wanting to know if they can help him contact Lisa. As the pair piece together Lisa's background and the history of the Voyniche Casket, they also research Bram and find that he's a well-known South African antiques dealer with his own sketchy past. When Anna and Fin flee their family holiday for work-related reasons back in Glasgow, Bram, rather alarmingly, shows up at Anna's house, offering to help find Lisa. He has his surly 12-year-old son, Marcos, in tow. Bram charms them into coming to Paris for the auction with him (he has a private plane), kicking off a mad dash around Europe. It's clear he's a con man, but how much so? Are Anna and Fin unwilling players in an elaborate ruse, or are their lives in danger? Mina keeps the plot charging at a breathless pace, and Anna is an engagingly tart narrator. Even for true-crime podcasters, the truth is tough to find in this brisk, entertaining thriller. Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.