Carole Lawrence Books In Order

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Publication Order of Ian Hamilton Mysteries Books

Edinburgh Twilight (2017)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Edinburgh Dusk (2018)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Edinburgh Midnight (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Carole was born in Texas, with her original name, Alice. She grew up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, which adds up to the plot setting for her book “Looking for Mary Gabriel.” Carole studied music when she was very young and went ahead to major in music in her undergraduate studies from the Louisiana State University. She later taught piano in New Orleans. Carole has a Master’s degree from the MFA writers program at Warren Wilson College in, North Carolina. She wrote her debut novel “Looking for Mary Gabriel” in 2002. Carole and her husband currently live in Texas with her husband and a grown son.

Edinburgh Twilight-Ian Hamilton Mysteries

Detective Inspector Ian Hamilton joined the Edinburgh police at 17 years of age and quickly rose to a detective inspector by the time he was 27. As a new century approaches, Edinburgh is a divided city. As a new era approaches, the affluent residents of New Town live absolute abundance and comfort, while Old Town’s paved streets fill with poverty crime and prostitution. Detective Inspector Ian Hamilton has seen it all on the crime-filled streets of Edinburgh. Scarred by the inexplicable fire that destroyed the lives of his parents, Hamilton must resolve one of the toughest cases in the police department when a young man lies dead in Holyrood Park in what looks like a case of strangulation.

He must investigate the serial murder case with little evidence gathered at the crime scene. Hamilton seeks help from his aunt, who is a gifted photographer and a librarian, George Pearson whose interests lie in assessing criminal minds. Meanwhile, the police collect more bodies from the unknown serial murderer as newspapers spread legendary tales of the “Holyrood Strangler,” setting panic mode across the city. The elusive killer seems to target detective Hamilton, as the murders lean on a strategic plan closely linked to the sleuth’s precincts, the only man who must put an end to this killing spree.

When detective Hamilton digs a little further from what they have gathered (dead man in the morgue), they find that he had a set of keys and playing cards- a 3 of clubs with unusual designs. They also presume that from his appearance, the dead man worked in an office. Detective Hamilton spotted a strange mark on his body including other factors that could help in the investigation.

The investigations established that Wycherly, the strangled man in the park worked in a solicitor’s office. Hamilton went to question his employer, Eugene Harley who conferred that on the day that he died; Wycherly received a letter that caused him great distress. Caroline Harley, a close colleague of Wycherley, was not working that day, but Hamilton insisted that he must talk to her as well. As he left the Harley office, the detective noticed a man following his closely.

The storyline progressively unfolds as more murders come up with more characters that help to build up the rising scary killings in the backstreets of Edinburgh. Henry Standish Wright a hypnotist performing shows at the local theater and known by his popular alias- Monsieur le Coq reveals something similar to what the detective had seen on the first murder scene. His brother Donald arrives with a stack of cards in the exact form such as those from the murder scene, stashed away in his backpack. Hamilton grows somewhat suspicious of his brother and wonders how the three individuals are connected.

The next murder has Hamilton reeling in a sequence of mixed reactions from what he has gathered so far. This time Kerry O’Donohue, the latest victim of strangulation has a single card, the 5 of clubs. Hamilton wonders where he could buy the cards, and his associate. Pearson directs him on where he can find poker cards. But Hamilton had not mentioned to him about the cards and wondered how Pearson asked him about it randomly. Hamilton is slowly closing in on the case, but sadly, more and more victims end up dead. Unfortunately, or fortunately, the detective arrives just on time to find, Freddie the last victim on his dying breathe, he managed to whisper into Hamilton’s ear a brief description of what transpired. From those few words, the detective got a crucial lead on the notorious murderer

The book is packed with suspense and endless clues on how to catch a disturbed psycho murderer who has developed a systematic way on how to nub his victims. It’s a great detective mystery book that heavily relies on instincts and clues, instead of technology or DNA sampling. Besides the heavy use of graphic language and numerous sex scenes, it was a great crime novel. The killer used graphic sexual imaginations to perform his killings that seemed a little odd, as it depicts the author’s frame of mind, or more explicitly, he comes off as a sadistic pervert (no pun intended). The detective desperately probes about the killer and almost gives up, halfway through the book when he thinks he’s hit a dead end. However, as we progress it is clear for the reader to see through and can almost guess the real identity of the killer. Overall, the book has a good flow of writing but feels overwhelming to read scores of pages full of sexual trivia.

Looking for Mary Gabriel

Carole uses her childhood memories of living with a mentally challenged sister to write this emotional story. Set in the deep south, in the custom of Carson McCullers, Looking for Mary Gabriel tells the tale of a young girl, Bonita who frantically wishes for her family to act normal, despite their odd behavior. Mary, Bonita’s little sister, has strange behavior unlike other kids in the neighborhood, and Bonita reluctantly plays with her, as she is torn between hating her sister and accepting her weird habits. Bonita’s mother does not treat her children with the affection that they deserve, but Mary seems oblivious to everything around her and has spontaneous outbursts of high and low moments. Bonita’s father has suspicious motives, and he seems distant.

Not long after Bonita’s observation, the inevitable happens, a dreadful act of violence destroys the family forever. Bonita’s father dies, and as the family prepares to bury him, she looks back at the lies and secrets that led to his untimely demise. Looking for Mary Gabriel is a story about the life of a lonely young child overcomes insurmountable odds to survive.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Carole Lawrence

One Response to “Carole Lawrence”

  1. Paul Cooper: 2 months ago

    I just read the Inspector Ian Hamilton trilogy and wondered if there would be a fourth book. Thank you for the first three, I enjoyed them tremendously. God bless, Paul


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