The Versailles Conspiracy by Robert Digger Cartwright
With a seasoned style and a complex protagonist, The Versailles Conspiracy by Robert ‘Digger’ Cartwright is a thrilling story of municipal corruption and one detective’s quest to find the truth. After losing his wife and son to a horrific car accident, hard-nosed Lieutenant Wickland begins an investigation into the death of a South Carolina city planner and a Russian business owner who may or may not be connected. Looming above the usual suspects is a mysterious Mr. Grey, a man of extraordinary power, but perhaps a man with flaws like everybody else. While discovering the shocking truth about the community’s dark underworld, Wickland learns that he may be a target just like several of his witnesses.
Exceptionally written from beginning to end, The Versailles Conspiracy transcends the usual thriller. Cartwright’s acute understanding of city politics is obvious early on and the complex characters jump from the page. While many first-time authors deter the reader away with run-on sentences, Cartwright’s literary acumen conveys what it means to be a pro. Each sentence snaps with conviction and the author’s attention to detail becomes utterly unbelievable at times. While the character dialogue isn’t sensational, Cartwright’s ability to convey a setting is outstanding. One particular scene has Lieutenant Wickland visiting a nervous witness and Cartwright’s build-up to the meeting reads like classic literature. It’s simply magical. Despite the tight structure, the storytelling becomes too guided at times with the narrator restating the obvious, but all in all, there’s not much to pick apart in The Versailles Conspiracy.
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