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Makana Mystery Books In Order

Publication Order of Makana Mystery Books

The Golden Scales (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dogstar Rising (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Ghost Runner (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Burning Gates (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
City of Jackets (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dark Water aka Drowning Light (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

The “Makana Mystery” series is from the mystery genre and is written by Parker Bilal (which is the pen name of author Jamal Mahjoub). The series started in the year 2012 with the release of “The Golden Scales”.

Makana is a former police inspector in Sudan before becoming a political refugee and later starts working as a private investigator who has low prices.

“The Golden Scales” is the first novel in the “Makana Mystery” series and was released in the year 2012. Cairo is an ancient city that has the old overlapping with the new; both the wealthy and the poor. There is inequality and corruption all over the place. In this place, it is possible that grudges and old secrets will linger and fester; not to mention the fact that people can just disappear without a trace.

Makana is having a hard time making a living while working as a private detective. While in need of money, he takes a case to find a missing soccer player for the Cairo team, named Adil Romario. He is hired by a corrupt mogul named Saad Hanafi, who owns the team.

He is quickly caught up in a mystery that takes him to the seedy part of this new city of his, finding Russian gangsters, vengeful women, and Muslim extremists. And last but not least a mother that is trying desperately to find her daughter that has gone missing. It is a trail that leads him right back to his very own story. Which is one that stirs up painful memories of their own and places him looking at an old enemy.

Fans of the novel enjoyed the way that the author was able to make the city of Cairo one of the characters, right along with the actual people. This is a novel that gives readers a look at what happens in modern day Egypt and shows the extremes of wealth and poverty that exists there. Fans felt that this was a book that has a depth not found in other mystery novels. It shows some of the tensions that exist between classes in Egypt. Some felt that they could not wait to read more about this interesting character of Makana.

“Dogstar Rising” is the second novel in the “Makana Mystery” series and was released in the year 2013. In the year 2001, summertime. Young boys’s mutilated bodies are piling up in Cairo’s backstreets. Suspicion has it that the killer is from the city’s Coptic community.

Makana sees the religious hatred started to grow, and feels that history might be repeating itself; like it did when he had to leave Sudan. Right now, he has another case that he has to solve. It is one that involves a travel agent that is disgruntled, some stolen money, and some letters that have a threatening message. The whole thing looks like just a family feud.

Makana meets a woman named Meera, who is a woman that has kept a dangerous secret and she asks for his help. Meeting this woman changes his whole mind about the whole thing. He then accidentally finds an unlikely link to the dead boys.

Fans of the novel like Makana, finding him to be a captivating character, and is what his opponents call him: an interesting man. The novel features the complex world of Egypt and shows what was happening in the world at that time with the society about to change itself. Some feel that the author does such a good job of capturing the world right before 9/11 that this could almost be considered historical fiction. The pages just flew by for some, who found that they had become fast fans of Parker Bilal.

“The Ghost Runner” is the third novel in the “Makana Mystery” series and was released in the year 2014. The year is 2002. There are tanks going into the West Bank, right as the aftermath of 9/11 is being seen all over the world. Needless to say, tensions are running high in Cairo.

Makana is awakened during a routine surveillance job that leads him to a murdered teen girl. This is a country where honor killings are common and the authorities are all too willing to turn the other cheek to them. So it is up to Makana to make things right and find the killer. He gets help, help he did not think he would get, from Azza; who is a woman that seems to have Makana’s own hunger for justice.

He goes to Siwa to find answers. The law in this oasis town near the Sahara seems to be far away and there are grievances bubbling under the surface.

Fans of the novel found that this is a great series that is unique and set in Egypt; it is like no other mystery series out there, as most just feature killing and a cop solving the crime. In this, you get a look at what an entire country’s political climate is like, and see the city as a whole. Some feel that these novels are more like gifts and that the words that Bilal writes are like poetry.

“The Burning Gates” is the fourth novel in the “Makana Mystery” series and was released in the year 2015. Makana gets called into his newest client’s office; this client is an art dealer that is called Kasabian. This dealer wants him to find a famous painting that disappeared when the United States invaded Baghdad. The piece made its way into Egypt by an Iraqi war criminal who wants to remain hidden, this is all the dealer will tell Makana about the piece.

The art world is far far away from the seedier parts of Cairo that Makana has gotten to know. That being said, Makana finds that the art world has an underbelly all its own. He goes out to find the piece of art and is wrapped up in a mystery that many want to keep hidden.

It is going to take him back into his past, during the war, and it will threaten this new life that he has worked on.

Fans of the novel found that Bilal is a strong writer and these novels are of a strong quality. Here he is able to show a man in exile mourn his old country, and it feels like loss is something that is spread throughout the novel. This book here, is the latest in a long line of winners.

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