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Max—an elderly Paris bookstall owner—is abducted at gunpoint. His friend, Hugo Marston, head of security at the US embassy, looks on helplessly, powerless to do anything to stop the kidnapper.
Marston launches a search, enlisting the help of semiretired CIA agent Tom Green. Their investigation reveals that Max was a Holocaust survivor and later became a Nazi hunter. Is his disappearance somehow tied to his grim history, or even to the mysterious old books he sold?
On the streets of Paris, tensions are rising as rival drug gangs engage in violent turf wars. Before long, other booksellers start to disappear, their bodies found floating in the Seine. Though the police are not interested in his opinion, Marston is convinced the hostilities have something to do with the murders of these bouquinistes.
Then he himself becomes a target of the unknown assassins. With Tom by his side, Marston finally puts the pieces of the puzzle together, connecting the past with the present and leading the two men, quite literally, to the enemy's lair.
Just as the killer intended.
"Enough intrigue to satisfy every reader. . . . A fantastic debut!"
—RT Book Reviews 4 1/2 Stars
"Much like a baguette, this fabulous story is crusty on the outside, sweet on the inside, and once you've had a bit, you can't wait for more."
"Stylish, suspenseful, and smart. . . As strong and welcome as a hot coffee on a chilly Paris morning. Bibliophiles, Francophiles, and mystery addicts rejoice! The debut of Hugo Marston is one you don't want to miss."
—Steven Sidor Author of Pitch Dark
"The Bookseller crackles with intelligence, wit, and insider knowledge. Hugo Marston is a hero to be reckoned with, and the lush Paris backdrop makes you ache to get on a plane. The perfect escapist read—Paris, books, history, intrigue— what more can you ask for?"
—J. T. Ellison, author of A Deeper Darkness
"Tightly plotted and filled with suspense, Mark Pryor's debut novel delivers the goods. Hugo Marston is a thinking man's hero, by turns honorable and ruthless. I can hardly wait for the next installment of Marston's adventures."
—Carol Carr Author of the India Black series
"A well-crafted, atmospheric mystery that kept me turning the pages until I was breathless. Hugo Marston is my new favorite hero, a classic yet modern-day protagonist who's a refreshing addition to the genre."
—Jennifer Hillier Author of Creep and Freak
"A fast-paced story that will keep readers guessing with every turn of the page. Pryor's sharp eye for detail makes contemporary Paris one of the novel's most endearing characters. The Bookseller is a first-rate beginning for a mystery series that will surely earn a loyal following."
—David Lindsey Author of the forthcoming novel Sorrow's Spy
"An elegant thriller and the promising start of a smart new suspense series. Hugo Marston is a welcome and thoughtful addition to the ranks of action heroes."
—Jeff Abbott Author of The Last Minute
Mark Pryor (Austin, TX) is an assistant district attorney with the Travis County District Attorney's Office, in Austin, Texas. He is the creator of the true-crime blog D.A. Confidential. He has appeared on CBS News's 48 Hours and Discovery Channel's Discovery ID: Cold Blood. This is his first mystery novel.