by Judith Flanders
Series: Sam Clair #4
Publication Date: May 15, 2018
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Book editor and amateur sleuth Samantha Clair attends a play filled with gruesome deaths--one of which is real.
Sam Clair figures she'll be a good sport and spend a night out at the theater in support of her upstairs neighbors, who have small parts in a play in the West End. Boyfriend (a Scotland Yard detective) and allround good sport Jake Field agrees to tag along to what is apparently an extra bloody play filled with dramatic gory deaths galore. So Sam expects an evening filled with faux fatalities. Until, that is, the curtain opens to the second act revealing a dummy hanging from the rafters, who's been made up to look suspiciously like Campbell Davison, the director of the production.
When Sam sees the horrified faces of the actors onstage, she realizes that this is indeed not a dummy, but Davison himself and this death is not part of the show. Now everyone wants to know who killed Campbell Davison?
As Sam learns more about the murdered man, she discovers that he wasn't all that well-liked amongst the cast and crew, so the suspect list grows. The show must go on but Sam knows a murderer must be apprehended so she sets out to find out what happened and why.
Flanders writes a great mystery, whose main character has a dry wit that I enjoy.
Howl of Wolves is centred around a theatre production, which isn’t one of my favourite settings, but it worked. I enjoyed watching Sam put facts and observations together without wedging herself in where she didn’t belong, or going around the backs of the police. The murderer might have been several people but wasn’t obvious enough to ruin the surprise.
I’d like to hope that there will be a fifth book, but it’s been awhile since this one was published. No more Sam and Jake adventures would be a disappointment.