Terminally Ill: A Hope Sze Novel

Publicity-seeking magician Elvis Serratore, in tribute to Houdini’s visit to Montreal nearly ninety years earlier, allows himself to be chained inside a coffin and dropped into the St. Lawrence River. When the escape fails, Montreal medical resident Hope Sze is able to resuscitate him. Against physicians’ recommendations, the magician prepares for an encore, but wants Dr. Sze, with her reputation for solving crimes, to find out if someone wants him dead. Narrating in a sprightly style while sharing some of the nitty-gritty of a resident’s job, Hope Sze is an utterly likeable character. —Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, July 2014

Montreal physician Hope Sze is looking for simple entertainment when she attends escape artist Elvis Serratore’s show, but when Elvis nearly dies in mid-act, Hope’s medical skills are available to save his life. She is less enthusiastic about his plea for her to use her detective skills to find out who tried to kill him by sabotaging his equipment. The subject of unwanted fame as a sleuth, Hope struggles with a too-complex love life, is faced with an ominous death at the hospital at which she works and becomes concerned about a young patient whose requests have deeply disturbing implications. She soon learns that if she does not seek out mysteries, the mysteries will seek her. The most recent installment in a series comprised thus far of three novels and a radio play, this novel demonstrates familiarity with the conventions of mysteries without being constrained by them and with the realities of Canada’s medical world. Although the tone is light, the author is not afraid to introduce darker themes. The three intertwining mysteries and Hope herself provide a narrative by turns entertaining and insightful. (Feb. 2014)– Publishers Weekly

“A sampling of the other contents, including experimental short-shorts by Melissa Yi and M. Elizabeth Castle and a clever turn on the greedy-relatives-want-inheritance bit by Kate Wilhelm, suggests high quality throughout.” Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine on “Because,” by Melissa Yi, in Fiction River Special Edition: Crime.

“One of the more impressive entries is Melissa Yi’s moving “Indian Time,” about Mohawk Fred Redish’s painful attempts to visit his young sons under the care of his white mother-in-law.”  –Publishers Weekly

“a fresh use of language to spin a storyline that is at once universally familiar and intriguingly original.”  –Brian Agincourt Massey, judge of the 2008 InnermoonLit Award for Best First Chapter of a Novel

CompellingMixing mystery in with sheer humanity and splendid characterization, Yuan-Innes’s story is a delight.”–Alicia Curtis, A&E Editor, The Stormy Petrel, Atlanta, Georgia

“Delivers a Bradburyian shocker”–Paul Di Filippo, Asimov’s

“A strong but opaque piececompellingly rendered”–Jay Lake, Tangent Online

Very fine workYuan-Innes deftly negotiates the creepyaspects, the affectingaspects, and the funnyaspects of her tale, as complications result when other dead return with other diseases to battle. The ending is quite moving.”Rich Horton

Some serious awesome going on.”–Jeff Soesbe, author of “Apologies All Around”

very compelling…I’ve never read a book with so much wall-to-wall sex”  –Christina Dudley, author of _Mourning Becomes Cassandra_, about THE LIST