Cover image for The big dig
Title:
The big dig
Author:
Barnes, Linda.
Personal Author:
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Minotaur, [2002]

©2002
Physical Description:
275 pages ; 24 cm
Language:
English
Geographic Term:
ISBN:
9780312282707
Format :
Book

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X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
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Summary

Summary

Carlotta Carlyle, the six-foot-tall redheaded private investigator, thought that working undercover searching out fraud on Boston's Big Dig would be a challenging assignment. After all, the Big Dig, the creation of a central artery tunnel running beneath crowded downtown Boston is an engineering marvel, the largest urban construction project in modern history, a fourteen billion dollar boondoggle in the eyes of protesters. Playing a mild-mannered secretary working out of a construction trailer is not quite the thrill ride she had in mind.
Carlotta decides to moonlight, taking on a missing persons case, but the search for Veronica James turns up one dead end after another. So do her fraud investigations on the Dig, and soon it looks like Carlotta has dug herself one big hole. But then a break-in at Veronica's coupled with the mysterious death of a construction worker on one of the sites stirs up a storm, and soon enough Carlotta is in over her head in more ways than one.
Suspenseful, unpredictable, and vivid, "The Big Dig" is a startling return to form for one of the masters of the crime genre.


Author Notes

Linda Barnes is a writer and educator. She was born in Detroit, Michigan. Barnes graduated from Boston University's School of Fine and Applied Arts majoring in acting, theater education, and English.

After graduation, Barnes taught theater in a Massachusetts high school. She wrote a one-act play that won a contest sponsored by the Boston Globe. The play Wings was published and performed across the country.

Barnes' first crime novel was published in 1981 and featured an amateur detective named Michael Spraggue. She continued with a series of books that featured Spraggue until a short story featured a new detective named Carlotta Carlyle. The first book in that series, A Trouble of Fools, won the American Mystery Award for best private eye novel of 1987. Barnes won the Anthony Award for Best Short Story for Lucky Penny in 1986.

Some of her other works include Deep Pockets, Heart Of The World and Lie Down With The Devil.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

The taut ninth entry in Barnes's Carlotta Carlyle series concerns malfeasance at Boston's Central Artery/Third Harbor Tunnel Project, "the biggest urban construction project in the history of the modern world," an engineering marvel and a multibillion-dollar opportunity for graft, kickbacks and political favors. Wounded in the thigh from a gunshot during her last case (1999's Flashpoint) and in the heart from a romance with a rising Mafia don, Carlyle poses as a secretary to find what's rotten at a Big Dig contractor, Horgan Construction. A disgruntled hardhat falls to his death-or is he pushed? Someone seems to be stealing dirt from the site. The boss's wife has a horrible case of nerves. Just as Carlyle feels stymied at the Big Dig, she's diverted by a second, more lucrative case-Dana Endicott, a Boston Brahmin, begs her to find her missing tenant, Veronica James, whose fate seems tied to an oddly silent kennel. Carlyle is immensely likable, tough without being hard, flawed in ways more original than the average mean streets sleuth. Barnes makes excellent use of Boston's ethnic and economic fiefdoms: the waterfront with its yuppies guzzling designer beer; South Boston, where despair clings to its citizens like the aluminum siding to their decrepit houses. The many plot threads are abruptly but satisfyingly tied up with writing that's vivid, economical and fun. Carlyle thinks: "This business, this art, of deception, of keeping daily secrets, hiding a side of your personality, intrigued me." It intrigues readers, too. (Nov. 1) Forecast: A big push from the publisher, including an author tour and national print advertising, could help bring Barnes the kind of sales associated with mysteries featuring better-known women sleuths-or with that other Boston female PI, Robert B. Parker's Sunny Randall. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved