is an excellent, if fanciful, new police procedural from Sara Gran, set in New Orleans, and Claire DeWitt, Private Eye, is a fantastic new character on the detective-fiction scene.
New Orleans, 2005. Hurricane Katrina has devastated the ninth ward and its surroundings. A D.A., last seen days before the hurricane, is missing and his nephew and heir needs help. He calls 'the most famous p.i. in the entire world' (nearly a direct quote), Claire DeWitt.
CDATCOTD is VERY V.I.Warshawski in that the city is a character unto itself in this novel - a deeply scarred and frightened character that doesn't easily lend a hand or a welcome. But Claire DeWitt is a much darker, far more deeply disturbed person. She's a nihilist and a seeker. An amoral moralist. She's sharp as a tack but has a long history of mental illness and self-destruction and institutionalization. (If you'd seen what she's seen . . .) In her own words, she never met a drug she didn't like. She's a high school dropout, a multi-millionaire, and a friendless orphan. It'd all be so unbelievable if Gran didn't pass it off with such panache.
Highly recommended for fans of hard-boiled detective fiction. Docked a star for some boring stretches.