Galileo by Ann McManGalileo by Ann McMan is the second book in the compelling Evan Reed Mystery series.

A lot of things have changed in the past two years and Evan is grumpier than ever because she is still trying to recover from a gunshot wound. In addition, the world as Evan once knew it is thrown off-kilter by the fact that her teenage daughter, Stevie has learned something new about herself and she isn’t too eager to share it with her and Stevie’s father, Dan has lost whatever was left of his mind because he has married a millennial. Then Father Tim, her childhood friend and the only man who could be like her brother from another mother, is questioning his belief in the church and his calling to be a priest. While all of this is going on, Evan’s blossoming relationship with the publishing tycoon, Julia Donne is showing signs that it is heading in the right direction.

In the midst of all the holiday planning, Evan accepts a tedious and stressful job. She has to find any skeletons in the closet of the president’s contentious choice for the U.S. Supreme Court. This job comes with several challenges—Evan has to work swiftly and gather as much valuable information as possible because the Senate is determined to nominate the judge and they are doing everything in their power to speed up his appointment. What is most troubling about this nominee is the fact that he has a lengthy and questionable paper trail to back him up and he is a conservative bigot. Evan’s assignment takes a turn for the worse when she uncovers a link between the judge and a discredited former U.S. Senator who she investigated many years ago. After working on that previous case, Evan promised herself that she would never work for the political giant, Marcus Goldman or anyone like him ever again but somehow this case has his sleazy trademark all over it.

Things really begin to fall apart when the bane of Evan’s existence and hired gun, Maya Jindal makes a grand appearance while Evan tries to wade through the quagmire of long held secrets, treachery in high places and a series of puzzling murders. Just when she thought this case couldn’t get any worse, she was proven wrong when it took a lethal turn toward her personal life. Now, Evan is questioning everything she believed she knew about Father Tim, her own religious beliefs and the happy future she once envisioned with Julia by her side.

Will Evan be able to solve this case and support her best friend without wrecking her budding relationship with Julia?

The Characters

Evangeline ‘Evan’ Reed is a private investigator and she specializes in digging up the dirt on politicians and other powerful public figures who have shady pasts that they’ve managed to bury because of the positions they hold in society. I’ve gotta hand it to Evan, she can see through any kind of façade or scheme because she has an innate ability to read people and situations in the blink of an eye. Evan is the kind of friend that I would love to have because she is fiercely loyal to anyone she considers dear to her heart and her frank and unapologetic way of speaking made her all the more endearing to me.

Julia Donne has inherited her father’s book publishing firm. She is determined to take the family’s business in a new direction by representing more books written by women and debut authors. I think Julia stole my heart from the first moment she was mentioned because she has the biggest heart ever. She is the epitome of integrity because she does what is morally right instead of making excuses and taking the easy way out. Julia definitely deserves a ton of respect and the highest of fives because she had to make some really heartbreaking decisions that would have rendered me emotionally paralyzed for a long while afterwards…

The Writing Style

I have been a huge fan of Ann McMan’s books ever since I’ve read Jericho. Her unique and flawless writing has a bad habit of keeping me shackled to my kindle and hungry for more of the heart-tugging and riveting stories that she is known for producing and this story is no exception. I enjoyed the fact that this story was told from Evan, Julia, Father Tim and Maya Jindal’s point of view because I was able to understand the deep-seated issues they were struggling with and I was also able to peek into the hearts and minds of these awesome characters! I must say that I was thoroughly entertained by the humorous dialogue between Evan, Julia, Stevie, Dan and Father Tim. I’ve lost count of how many times I laughed out loudly while I was reading some of Evan’s smart-assed wisecracks and Stevie’s responses were just as epic because I almost dropped my kindle for every priceless quip she made!

The Pros

I was blown away by the political intrigue, Evan’s quick wit and her ability to always get the information she needed no matter how daunting it may have seemed at first. Once again, I’ve questioned my life choices regarding my desk job because while I was reading this story, I had the pleasure of being one of Evan’s shortest armchair sidekicks! For me, nothing could come close to the excitement of putting all the pieces together and sussing out the clues in this enthralling mystery at 2 am in the morning with the best cup of cappuccino known to womankind.

The Cons

My book dragon and I are boldly demanding a sequel! Right now, I’m fervently praying to all the literary goddesses that exist… Please let there be a book three in this captivating series!

Heads up about this book (and this may be a spoiler): It contains content about the ritualized sexual abuse of teenaged boys.

aprils favourite bookstaras favourite lesbian booksThe Conclusion

I’m a shameless mystery lover and I am willing to admit that this story has won a place at the top of my favorite ‘cloak-and-dagger-whodunit’ list. Who doesn’t love a story that has a badass private eye, a quirky and foul-mouthed partner in snooping, a sassy cyber-sleuth and a few poignant moments that will leave you speechless long after the story has ended. If you’re a fan of all of the above, then you definitely need to read this story!

Excerpt from Galileo by Ann McMan

“We got word tonight that POTUS is nominating Cawley to the court tomorrow.”

“Cawley?” Evan took a few moments to let that sink in. The high court’s tenuous balance of liberal and conservative ideologies had been knocked off-kilter when its moderate-voiced justice, Abel McIntyre, had died suddenly from a massive brain hemorrhage. Everyone knew the Republican-controlled administration was salivating at this prospect to tip the high court’s balance—and bias—and lists of constructionist judges were circulating in the back rooms of Congress before McIntyre’s body was cold. But Cawley? Cawley was a judicial lightning rod—a polarizing poster child of the far right. He’d never make it through the confirmation process. His appointment to the Third Circuit had nearly torn the Senate apart.

“Are you still there?” Dan’s impatience had not abated.

“Of course. I’m just taking it in.”

“No shit. This is one helluva curve ball.” Evan could hear Dan rustling papers. “We have to move fast. This guy has a paper trail that’s nine zillion miles long. But most of the stuff was already vetted during his circuit court appointment hearings, so it’s old news. We need you to go deeper to find anything not already in the public domain. And you gotta do it at light speed. Already, dark money PACs are lining up to pump big bucks into PR campaigns to short-circuit any efforts to block his nomination.”

“Dan? There’s no way this guy will make it through the judiciary committee. He’s a relic—not to mention a homophobe and a bigot.”

“Do you read the fucking papers, Sleeping Beauty? Welcome to the reboot of Huxley’s Brave New Nightmare.”

“Okay. Whattaya got to get me started?”

“A couple of random leads and about ten thousand reams of paper.”

“Great.” Evan said. “I’m gonna need some extra help on this one.”

“I know. Spool up your usual geeks. We’ll pick up the tab.”

“Who’s we?”

“The DNC.”

Evan thought his answer was too simple. That got her antenna up “And?”

Dan didn’t reply.

“Dan? I’m not taking this job until you tell me who else is paying the freight.”

“Some outside donors who choose to remain nameless.”

“Is the money clean?”

“Yeah.” She heard him laugh. “Squeaky clean.”

Dan made her crazy, but she knew he’d never lied to her before—not knowingly, at least.

“Okay.” She said. “Send what you’ve got to my Signal account. I’ll get started tomorrow.”


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The Evan Reed Mystery Series

Dust: book 1

Galileo: book 2 

Bits and Bobs

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Note: I received a free review copy of Galileo by Ann McMan. No money was exchanged for this review. When you use our links to buy we get a small commission which supports the running of this site

About the author

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My name is April Adams and I am an accountant at a civil service office. Even though I read a wide variety of lesbian fiction, I enjoy mystery and thriller books the most because I love the state of suspense the stories have me in until the end and I find out “who’s done it.”