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Lawrence H. Levy Books In Order

Publication Order of Mary Handley Mystery Books

Second Street Station (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Brooklyn on Fire (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle


Lawrence H. Levy is an extremely famous TV writer. After graduating from Cornell University, he wrote for lots of famous TV shows like ” Seinfeld” and “The Love Boat”. During his time as a writer, he also worked with lots of famous actors like Aaron Spelling. He also taught film writing to the students at Loyola Marymount University.

Even after retiring as a TV writer, he didn’t stop. He started writing historical novels. ” Second Street Station” was his first book and was a huge success. It was appreciated by both the critics and the audience.

His writing skills also earned him several awards and recognition. He was nominated for Emmy and also won the Writers Guild Award.

” Mary Handley Mystery” series is an extremely popular mystery series by Lawrence H. Levy. The first book of this series is titled ” Second Street Station”. Mary Handley is the central character of this series. This book takes us back to the 1980’s. During that time, it was a completely male dominated society. Mary used to live with her mother and brother. Her brother was in the police. Mary used to work in a factory to support her family. However, she was not in very good terms with her boss. One day, she couldn’t resist anymore and ended up abusing her boss. That got her fired and she became unemployed. Her mother wanted her to marry. However, she was not like the other girls of that time. She was clever, independent and had no intentions of marriage.

Since her childhood, she always wanted to become a detective. Her chance finally came when Charles Goodrich, a fromer bookkeeper of Thomas Edison was murdered. During that time, there were plenty of protests by women for equal rights. In order to calm down the protestors, the Police Chief wanted to hire a women in the police department. And since, she always wanted to become a detective and her brother was also in the department, she was selected. All the senior male officers were hoping for Mary to fail, but Mary wanted to prove them wrong.

As the investigation went on, Mary realized that the reason behind the murder was probably because of a journal he was working on during his time with Thomas Edison. Mary realized that a famous public figure could be behind the murder. She even interviewed famous personalities like Nikola Tesla and J.P Morgan. They were all extremely powerful men and could go to any extent to save their reputation. Everyone told Mary that she had no chance against all these famous industrialists. However, she was determined to showcase her detective skills and find the murderer.

This book is actually based on a true story. Lawrence H. Levy has managed to give enough twists and turns to the story, which will keep the readers hooked. The central character, Mary is like the perfect role model for every girl. Even in a male dominated society, she refused to accept the social norms and was determined to live her own way. All the powerful figures were trying to bring her down, but she stood strong and faced all the challenges thrown at her. Levy has also portrayed Thomas Edison in a very different light. Levy’s description about him is slightly different from what we have read in our books. This book also gives us a glimpse of how New York was during the 1980’s. We get to know about the political scenario during that time. This will make this book more appealing to the history lovers. In short, Levy’s brilliant writing style and the interesting story line makes it a must read for all the mystery lovers.

The second book of the series is titled ” Brooklyn on Fire”. It is a continuation to the first book. After successfully solving the first mystery, Mary was quite confident and was determined to become a full time detective. However, her mother didn’t support her career choices. During the family dinners, she always criticized Mary. However, as we know, Mary was very stubborn and it was almost impossible to change her mind. She even opened a small office to meet her clients. She was delighted when she was finally handed another case. One day in her office, she was approached by Emily Worsham. Emily was convinced that her uncle, John was murdered and she wanted Mary to prove that. Mary readily agreed to take up the case. At that point, she had no idea, that she will get involved in a high profile family drama and will have to go against several powerful politicians.

John had a previous wife named Arabella. She was currently married to a rich man. Emily thought that she was very important to the investigation and wanted her to help them. Arabella didn’t want to get involved, because she thought that it will cause troubles to her marriage. However, she finally agreed to help them. Meanwhile, a wealthy man named George approached Mary and agreed to help her. They follow the clues which leads them to the place where Jon was married. Meanwhile, Mary was also going through some family troubles. Her brother who was in the police was accused of a murder and was arrested. Mary was also struggling to solve her own case. At one point, she was nearly killed while investigating. However, it was up to Mary to keep her calm and find the killer.

Just like the previous book, this one also has a very exciting an an interesting story line. We are introduced to many characters in the beginning of the book. It is admirable how Mary went against her family and decided to become a full time detective. While solving the case, she was distracted by the troubles of her brother. However, she kept calm and was fully focused on exposing the killer. There were also lots of twists throughout the plot. As a reader, you will never be able to predict the killer, until you have finished the book. Just like the previous book, this one also gives us a glimpse to the history of New York. If you are a fan of mystery novels, then you must read this book.

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