Daring thieves steal the 200-year-old Jade Lily from a Minneapolis art museum and then offer to sell it back for one-third of its insured value--$1,300,000. But there's a catch. They demand that unlicensed P. I. Rushmore McKenzie act as go-between. McKenzie reluctantly agrees partly out of curiosity--why did the thieves pick him to deliver the ransom?--and partly because he feels he owes a favor to the insurance company that made him a millionaire years earlier.
But when McKenzie makes contact with the thieves, he is bound, gagged and tossed in the back of a speeding van. It turns out there is a wide circle of misbegotten scoundrels who want the Lily for themselves, including a Bosnian thug, the U. S. State Department, a crooked cop, and a fortune hunter out of McKenzie's past. The game soon turns dark and violent and as the bodies start piling up, McKenzie comes to believe the truth of the Jade Lily's curse--terrible death follows anyone who touches it.
Praise for CURSE OF THE JADE LILY:
"McKenzie, who navigates a treacherous path just to stay (barely) alive, not only delivers a Nick Charles-like ending but metes out poetic justice to a fair number of participants." --Publishers Weekly, stared review
"Like the other entries in this entertaining series, the book is a contemporary mystery with overtones from the era of classic hard-boiled detectives: the Jade Lily itself, with its perhaps not so mythical curse; the first-person narration; the wonderfully named femme fatale, Heavenly Petryk. Rushmore is a likable series hero, a guy who'd rather be doing not much of anything but who won't back down from a fight. The book works as a stand-alone, too, so readers unfamiliar with the series can jump right in." --Booklist
"The latest McKenzie mystery is a wonderful thriller... Filled with humor and a strong cast...this is a fast-paced winner..." --The Mystery Gazette
"Housewright's wit is every bit as sharp as (Robert B.) Parker's, and as I read along, I was chuckling to myself over bits of dialogue and acerbic observations on McKenzie's part... (It) has the snap and crackle of great storytelling. I can't think of a better way to spend a couple of evenings than curled up with a new David Housewright novel. Check it out for yourself" --Killer Books