Death of a Young Lieutenant by B.R. Stateham
Fahrenheit Press | June 19th, 2019
Meet Jake Reynolds. Art thief extraordinaire. His specialty is Renaissance masterpieces, with a few ‘modern’ selections thrown in. His modus operendi is to create an exact replica of the original and switch them with the original going to his client. His ‘technique’ in aging a masterpiece he developed himself. A secret he will carry to his grave. His clients are fanatical art connoisseurs who are very powerful and very rich. He worked his trade from 1903 through 1950 and retired. Never arrested—rarely suspected of his true occupation.
And unlucky. Unlucky in that, while trying to complete one of his many capers, he somehow is dragged into a murder investigation. Unfortunately he is a thief with a conscience. As the series evolves we see he develops a reputation of being a ‘crackerjack detective.’ All sorts of people and police departments come to him to ask for his help. But how can you solve a murder (a crime, which for him, is a crime which cannot go unpunished) and complete your own felonious endeavor without being caught?
The first book in the series is entitled, The Death of a Young Lieutenant. In the opening weeks of World War One, and as a member of a newly formed British Royal Flying Corps squadron shipped off to Belgium, he is asked by his squadron commander to prove the innocence of a young lieutenant accused of murdering an NCO. At the same time, Jake wants to steal a 14th Century Jan van Eck painting. The problem is both the evidence to prove or disprove the lieutenant’s guilt and the painting reside behind enemy lines. How do you prove a man’s innocence and steal a masterpiece while an entire German army is breathing down your neck?
This book opens with the author introducing the main character, Jake Reynolds, who is an art thief and war veteran. His story begins with during WWI with Jake with the British against the Germans. A murder happens with his squadron and is tasked with finding the killer. While searching for the killer comes into possession of a famous painting, in which the story he is telling is about.
This book is definitely different in its own way. Jake Reynolds is a very unique character who happens to be lucky to have made it through the things he did in this story. He shows a great deal of loyalty to his comrades throughout the story and I really liked that about him.
I’m glad I had the opportunity to read this book and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a quick historical fiction read.
Thank you, Blackthorn Book Tours for the opportunity to read this book.