To outsiders, the relationship between Manhattan antiquities assessor Annalisse Drury and sports car magnate Alec Zavos must look carefree and glamorous. In reality, it’s a love affair regularly punctuated by treasure hunting, high adventure, and the occasional dead body.
When Alec schedules a getaway trip to show Annalisse his mother’s Italian birthplace, he squeezes in the high-stakes business of divesting his family’s corporation. But things go terribly wrong as murder makes its familiar reappearance in their lives – and this time it’s Alec’s disgraced former CFO who’s the main suspect.
Accompanied by friend and detective Bill Drake, Annalisse and Alec find themselves embroiled in a behind-closed-doors conspiracy that threatens the reputation and legacy of Alec’s late father – linking him to embezzlement, extortion, and the dirty business of the Sicilian Mafia. The key to it all might be a gifted set of rosary beads where Annalisse can use her skills for appraising artifacts to uncover the truth. She leads Alec toward answers that are unthinkable—and events that will change their futures forever.
Scattered Legacy is the third in Marlene M. Bell’s thrilling Annalisse series, which weaves romance, crime, and historical mystery into addictive tales to instantly captivate fans of TV show Bones or Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code.
The characters in this book are well-developed, the likable ones easy to like and the hateable ones easy to hate. Annalisse comes across as a bit diffident at times, especially when she starts to question where she really stands with Alec, but when the chips are down and it really counts, she stays cool, calm, and collected. Generosa, the art maven with a mysterious past. She loves her family, and she includes Annalisse in the circle of those she loves. She may not realize the danger that awaits when she gifts Annalisse with a medieval rosary. Alec, determined to clear his father’s name and successfully sell the family business as well as unravel the former CFO’s involvement in the ugly murder they’ve stumbled into.
Marlene Bell takes you on a transatlantic thrill ride with this one. I was drawn in from the beginning with the idea that Annalisse has suffered because of secrets kept from her. When it turned out that Generosa may have kept secrets of her own from everyone, even her family, I couldn’t put the book down! There’s a grisly death, white collar crime, a seemingly abandoned cat that may play an important role, chases and pursuits, and so much more. And let’s not forget romance. Could you have a book set in Italy with no romance in it? Don’t worry, though, the romance isn’t front and center at the expense of the mystery.
Scattered Legacy is the third in a series, but I was able to pick up enough of the back story from this book to read it as a stand-alone. I’ll go back and read the first two, though, because this one was mighty good! I recommend you do the same.
Five “ready to hop a plane and go to Italy” stars for Scattered Legacy. I hope there are more to come in the series!
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