Publication Order of Lei Crime Books
|Blood Orchids||(2011)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Torch Ginger||(2012)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Black Jasmine||(2012)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Broken Ferns||(2013)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Stolen in Paradise||(2013)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Twisted Vine||(2013)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Unsound||(2013)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Shattered Palms||(2014)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Dark Lava||(2014)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
|Fire Beach||(2014)||Hardcover Paperback Kindle|
Hawaiian author of many crime novels, Toby Neal has been writing her unique brand of fiction for some time now. Creating somewhat of a storm online, she has produced buzz that continues to grow through the social-media sphere, something which she has become quite adept at. With both critical and commercial success, she has managed to garner herself a sizable amount of attentiaon in a very short time-span due to her work. Using her other field where she specializes in mental-health as a therapist as well, she utilizes her experience creating some of the most thoroughly researched and in-depth stories available. This is what has led her to write her ‘Lei Crime’ series, one of her most popular collections of books to date. Lei Tuxeira is the strong protagonist featured in this series, a smart, brave yet vulnerable heroine, and it is her history in counselling that Toby is most grateful for when adding depth to her character.
With over eight books in the series so far, along with some subsequent spin-off novels as well, it’s a strong franchise with a lot of potential. Finding its own niche within the genre, its hero fits in nicely creating an idiosyncratic voice all of her very own. As an author Toby Neal has come a long way with the Lei Crime franchise and she shows no signs of stopping anytime soon.
Initially published in 2011 in November, this was to be the first in the Lei Crime series, as it set-up the premise. Introducing the character and how she was to progress during the subsequent novels, it manages to build a style and tone of what’s to come. This is done by providing the protagonist with her first key case, managing to create a strong ambiance that her readers came to appreciate.
The character of Lei Tuxeira herself is one of both strength and vulnerability in equal measure as, whilst she is more than capable of taking care of herself, she has more than enough wounds from her past than she can care for. With a dark and troubled history she looks to overcome the skeletons that reside in her closet as she seeks to create a new life for herself as a cop. This leads to her being a resilient yet formidable foe to those that come up against her, as she looks for justice and truth and to ensure she always does the right thing. There are many characters both recurring and none recurring that aim to help her along the way as well, as these are the people that can assist her in her duties. Whether it be a killer on the loose or those that operate on the force around her, they always manage to push her to the limit ensuring that she is fully challenged. Although this might be tiring for her at times, she manages to keep her head above water, despite all the mounting pressure that’s continually building. The town of Hilo, the Big Island town in which she operates, is also a character unto itself as well, as it is here that she does most of her case-work throughout the series run. This is also the town that she hoped to get over her trouble from the past and make a new name and career for herself as a cop protecting the area. Whilst the town itself may appear sleepy and quiet at first glance, there’s more to it than initially meets the eye, as brimming just underneath the surface is its criminal element just waiting to be uncovered.
In this first outing Lei Tuxeira has her first big case in the Hawaiian paradise of Hilo, as she finds herself investigating two dead teenagers after discovering them on a routine patrol. It is then that she learns of similarities between the dead girls life and her own troubled and tragic past, something which the killer is only too well aware of as they toy with her and her growing obsession in the case. Will Lei Tuxeira be able to crack the case and find out who is behind these viscious killings before they strike again? Can she overcome her past and get on with the task in hand doling out justice to those who need it? What will become of her and can she ever love again as she finds out the deadly mystery behind the blood Orchids?
In this follow-up novel, originally published in 2012 on the 12th of July, we find the next installment and the next case for Lei Tuxeira to solve. With her character already firmly established, it goes about building upon the initial premise setting up further developments for the cast within. It also manages to take it in a somewhat different direction whilst simultaneously remaining true to the original, as it establishes a slightly different tone and ambiance to what came before.
This time focusing upon the island of Kaua’i, it takes a look into the many disappearing transients there, as it is only the detective herself that manages to notice this growing trend. Taking some time away there to investigate, she works to find out whether or not it’s the work of one individual or a series of cult killings. Who is doing this and what are their motivations for doing so? Can she find out in time or will she be next? What will become of her as she looks into the case of ‘torch ginger’?
The Lei Crime Series
As a series it’s a highly coherent and articulate franchise that’s success lies not only in its narrative, but also its central protagonist as well. Creating a well structured framework for her to work within is the key to this success, along with providing a number of layers to each of the characters, giving it the sense of depth that makes it stand out from the rest. The author Toby Neal seems to be her strongest here in what should continue to be a very enticing series as it expands its audience with each subsequent novel. With more books set to be released it appears she is showing no signs of stopping them anytime soon.Book Series In Order » Characters » Lei Crime