By Camille Minichino
A trip to the Revere Public Library proves fatal for thirty-six-year-old Yolanda Fiore. Her body is found early one morning, at the bottom of the stairs to the basement. In this fifth Periodic Table Mystery, retired physicist Gloria Lamerino is back in her hometown, Revere, Massachusetts, after a hair-raising week visiting her friend Elaine Cody in California. She's not inclined to take on another murder investigation -- her love life with homicide detective Sergeant Matt Gennaro is all the contact she needs with the Revere Police Department for a while. But Gloria will do anything for her lifelong friends and current landlords, Rose and Frank Galigani, operators of the Galigani Mortuary. So when John, their journalist son, is arrested for murdering Yolanda -- his former girlfriend -- Gloria goes to work to find the real killer.
By Felita Daniels in k-zine.net - 2/10/2005
Camille Minichino's mystery series is tied to the periodic table. Don't panic, if you weren't good at science in school, you'll still enjoy these books. Obviously Camille excelled in science, she received her Ph.D. in physics from Fordham University in New York City. Somewhere between research, teaching, and being on the staff at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory she still finds time to write these enjoyable books. The detective of this series is Gloria Lamerino. Gloria has returned to live in her hometown of Revere, Massachusetts after teaching physics at a major university in California for thirty years. Now she's a science consultant for the police. Her collaboration with homicide detective Matt Gennara adds a little chemical reaction to the story line. Yes, Virginia, single women over 30 can have a social life. Did I mention Gloria lives above the mortuary? Matt picks up Gloria at the airport and they swing by their family friends house Frank and Rose Galigani's for dinner. But before dessert can be served, the police arrive to question Frank and Rose's grown son, John Galigani, for questioning in the death of his ex-girlfriend. Yolanda Fiore's body was found at the bottom of the stairs in the public library. Seems she had a little help getting there. Matt is off the case due to conflict of interest, so it's up to Gloria to come to the aid of her long-time friends. Starting with the premise that John is innocent, Gloria must learn more about the variables of Yolanda's life. The volatility starts there. Yolanda was an investigative reporter and troublemaker of sorts. Did her death have something to do with her own digging into a controversy over the library expansion, something to do with her recent love life, or her renegade newsletter Raid-iation? She was fired from her job just a week before. Coincidence or clue? There's also something that John's not sharing with Gloria. At every turn she finds more and more why the police are interested in John as a suspect. Can Gloria get to the truth without ruining her relationship with her friends? She finds that questioning a mother about her son's life can get a bit touchy. Will Gloria be invited back for dessert? Camille's books are a nice blend of family and friendships, great Italian food, empowerment, a little romance and science mixed in with the detective work. These periodic table themed novels are definitely more on the cozy side than the police procedural side. If you like that format with some intelligence, these novels will bring you an enjoyable read. Camille's other book titles include: The Hydrogen Murder, The Helium Murder, The Lithium Murder, The Beryllium Murder, The Carbon Murder and The Nitrogen Murder.
Felita is a freelance writer, investor, divorced mom, fixer-upper homeowner, and 8 to 5 worker (not necessarily in that order). Her book reviews appear weekly at K-zine and she occasionally pens a feature article on topics that interest her.