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Formats
Ebook Details
  • 09/2022
  • 978-0-9979689-9-6
  • 352 pages
  • $8.99
Paperback Details
  • 09/2022
  • 978-0-9979689-8-9
  • 352 pages
  • $16.99
Michael Stanley
Author
A Deadly Covenant

Adult; Mystery/Thriller; (Publish)

While digging a trench for a new water project, a backhoe operator unearths the skeleton of a long dead Bushman. Kubu and Scottish pathologist, Ian MacGregor, are sent to sort out the formalities, but the situation rapidly gets out of hand. MacGregor discovers eight more skeletons—a massacre of Bushmen including women and children. However, the locals deny any knowledge of the event. When an elder of the village is murdered at his home, the local police believe it was the result of a robbery gone wrong. Kubu thinks otherwise. So does an elderly woman who believes it was the work of Mami Wata, a powerful river spirit. When she dies in an apparent crocodile attack, suspicions rise. Things become still more complicated when a mysterious Bushman appears at the massacre site, collapses, then disappears again, but seems connected to the murders in some way. Kubu’s boss, Assistant Superintendent Mabaku, joins them as accusations of corruption are levelled at the water project, and international anger over the massacre of the Bushman families builds. But how do the recent murders link to the dead Bushmen? As they investigate, they uncover a deadly covenant made many years before by an unknown group, and they begin to fear that their own lives may be in danger.

Reviews
Aubrey Nye Hamilton, Kevin's Corner Reviews

“Not much like Precious Ramotswe’s version of Botswana, the Botswana shown here is more realistic, with the intricacies and the contradictions to be expected of such an ancient land. The resolution is far more complex than I imagined, keeping me in suspense until the final pages. A fine addition to the series.” – Aubrey Nye Hamilton, Kevin’s Corner

Kathleen Costa, Kings River Life

Brilliant! The pair, known jointly as Michael Stanley, has brought to life Botswana’s flora and fauna, its days and nights, its culture, mythology, and superstition, and more than enough murder in this second prequel in their Detective Kubu Mysteries. The beautiful, yet diverse, natural world and rich culture lies amid deep prejudices, contentious protest, corruption, and secrets that precipitated murder then and murder now. …The investigation has its typical obstacles, misdirection, and an intense anticipation of the final reveal, as well as delving deeper into the various personalities and motivations. What an outstanding read! A top contender for my Best of 2022!

– Kathleen Costa, Kings River Life

Publishers Weekly

Set in 1999, Edgar finalist Stanley’s excellent eighth mystery featuring Botswana’s Det. Sgt. David Bengu, the author’s second prequel (after 2020’s Facets of Death), finds Bengu, affectionately known as Kubu (or hippo, for his girth), still learning the skills to become an astute and observant homicide investigator. When excavations get underway for a water project, a Bushman’s skeleton is unearthed, and Kubu, who’s complained that his daily work is dull, is sent by his boss to see what the pathologist, Ian MacGregor, concludes about the cause of death. MacGregor’s job is made near impossible by the age of the remains, which he dates to more than 10 years earlier. Foul play seems even more probable when MacGregor finds eight more Bushman skeletons of similar age. The prospect of a massacre cover-up raises the stakes. Meanwhile, some present-day murders give Kubu plenty to occupy him. Stanley (the pen name of Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip) gets everything­­—the dialogue, the terrain descriptions, the plot beats—right. More prequels fleshing out this complex and endearing protagonist would be welcome.

Formats
Ebook Details
  • 09/2022
  • 978-0-9979689-9-6
  • 352 pages
  • $8.99
Paperback Details
  • 09/2022
  • 978-0-9979689-8-9
  • 352 pages
  • $16.99

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