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Artemesia is another fascinating thriller by author DC Mallery. The story takes place in Savanaugh, New York, and the chapters alternate between the present and the past. The main characters are Sage Stevenson, Tony Burton, his sister Barbara Artemesia Burton, and Marquis, or “Marq,” Marchant. The story introduces the reader to Sage, a post-doc researcher in the Paleography Department Lab at Amberlin College. Sage starts to have visions during the day, and there are times when she completely passes out during these visions. Meanwhile, the police find a body with its limbs cut off and reattached. There is also a strange pattern on the body, and Deputy Marq Marchant tells the others that the pattern is like a fold-in, one of those Mad Magazines everyone read as a kid. Marq actually finds a Mad Magazine at the scene of the crime, and now the other officers are suspicious of him since he is a new deputy. Readers are then introduced to Tony Burton, the local wealth of the community whose sister Artemesia supposedly died of Huntington’s Disease twelve years ago. The community always did think it odd that she was immediately buried on the Burton property. Tony is a philanthropist and opens up a center in his sister’s name for people who need prosthetic limbs. His own arm was brutally detached while trying to help his sister on one of her escapades, and so this is a cause that he is close to.

I appreciated the way the author took the time to introduce each of the main players in this book. Knowing that all of these characters would come together made the story sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat exciting. There are thrillers where the audience has to guess who the killer is and ones where the killer’s identity is acknowledged early on. In this story, the identity of Marionette Murderer is revealed early on. Being able to follow the killer as he planned his next moves was thrilling.

I also really liked how the main story centered around old artifacts. The use of history and philosophy in the book helps to explain why everything happens the way it does in the story. In the book, Artemesia wants to experience transcendence, and this is what triggers a time-altering reaction among the characters.

Artemesia is the perfect book club book because there are so many moving parts that work together so well. Discussions about the themes in this book, including transcendence and its history, family relationships, and self-harm, are ones that can be discussed well into the wee hours of the night. DC Mallery is a mastermind and pulls together his characters, scenery, and plot in a way that readers will not be able to put his books down.

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Star Count 5/5
Format Trade
Page Count 316 pages
Publish Date 05-Dec-2022
ISBN 9781735338644 Buy this Book
Issue December 2022
Category Mystery, Crime, Thriller