My aunt has been an avid reader of J. A. Jance ever since she met the woman. She has read everything by Jance and has been begging me to read something by her. So, when Christmas rolled around, guess what I found in my stocking? _Taking the Fifth_ by J. A. Jance. I read a little of it, and was immediatly intruiged. For the next day, my parents could not pull me away from the book.
_Taking the Fifth_ is the fourth book in the J. P. Beaumont series. Beaumont lives a detective life in Seattle. Even though when his rich girlfriend died a couple of years ago he inherited a fortune and was set up for a comfortable life, Beau didn't stop working. He loves what he does, and he does it well. So, one night by the Pike Place Market, a man is found stabbed to death. It is strange because they are not knife wounds, and the police are stumped as to what caused them. But, around the crime scene, there is found a colbat blue, stiletto heeled shoe with blood all over it. Beau feels that if he can find the owner of the shoe, he will find the murderer. As Beau gets more involved with the murder, many aspects are involved including drugs, AIDS, homosexuals, homeless people, smuggling, deceit, and a sexy little blond who looks more and more like the ring leader of the whole thing. Can Beau keep his head and find out who is commiting all these atrocities, or will time run out for our belevoed detective?
You may be wondering why, if I read _Taking the Fifth_ around Christmas, I'm still talking about it now. Well, I havn't been able to get it out of my head! Jance wrote Beaumont so well that I felt like I got to know him throughout the book. He was startlingly three demensional, and I often times felt like I was looking over his shoulder at some evidence. I cared about him so much that by the end of the book I was sad to let him go. The mystery was utterly genius and I was kept guessing until the end. There were so many suspects with many motives that it was very fun to guess who the culprit was. Seattle is my favorite setting (okay, I'm a little biased because I live here), and I was very pleased with Jance's research of our city. It all was acurate, and I love reading about my hometown. I could smell the familiar saltyness of Lake Union and I could picture the familiar Fifth Avenue Theater (a major landmark in the book where half of the action takes place) and it's intricate Chinese design.
_Taking the Fifth_ is entertainment from cover to cover, and when you are finished you will want to rush out and buy all of Jance's stories. The plot is believable and intense, you will find yourself holding your breath more then once. I was rooting for Beau out loud! Jance's writing skills shine throughout this book; she is a true artist that makes you feel for the characters. She is my favorite mystery writer. So, if you love mystery, buy _Taking the Fifth_ by J. A. Jance and you won't be dissapointed.