MICHAEL GRUBER – Night of the Jaguar. Harper, paperback reprint, March 2007. Originally published in hardcover by William Morrow, March 2006. Trade paperback: Harper, November 2009.


   Jimmy Paz, formerly a crackerjack Miami homicide detective, works in his mother’s restaurant, but still consults, on occasion, for the police.

   Now, as a series of horrific murders begin to eliminate the shady members of a cartel that is planning to level a Colombian forest for the highly desirable lumber it contains, he’s drawn into the investigation, which seems to target an improbable giant jaguar as the killer.

   Jimmy’s mother is considered by the native community to have special powers that her son has inherited, a sensitivity to psychic forces that invade his dreams and those of his young daughter, a development that makes the case a very personal one for Jimmy Paz.

   There’s an environmental group with connections to the Colombian timber region, a Colombian shaman, and some very scary drug lords, with even scarier associates they bring in to settle with whoever or whatever is reducing their number very quickly.

   Gruber tends to overwrite, but, just when you think one of his too bright and too articulate characters is never going to shut up, the plot lunges ahead again with some slambang action that almost makes you forget the oases of boredom that crop up from time to time.

   This is the third in a series. I may read the first one, but if it’s as wordy as this one, I’ll probably close the book on the series.

    The Jimmy Paz Series —

        1. Tropic of Night (2003)


        2. Valley of Bones (2005)
        3. Night of the Jaguar (2006)

    Note: Subsequent books by Michael Gruber have not involved Jimmy Paz.