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Alibi Books

A Place of Gardens and Lilies

A Place of Gardens and Lilies

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The Xavier Lombard Series — TWO

Eric Leclere — 2005
Alibi Books, London England

Paperback: 19.8cm x 12.9cm — 218 pages
ISBN: 9780953556212
Language: English

No bones about it: Alan Winston didn’t invent the wheel, isn’t invariably sweet to puppies, and hasn’t necessarily got what it takes to become another anybody. As a matter of fact, it could even be said Alan Winston is not truly there, or, come to think of it, always getting through to himself. So, on account of him knowing a few difficulties like that, maybe there was always a certain inevitability to his ending up at the end of a Mile End dead-end in a bid to dissolve among Greater London’s oohing and aahing hungry hordes; drop out of sight until you drop out of mind, so to speak. Who can tell? But there can be no doubt about some things: whatever else he may or may not be, Alan Winston is gorgeous. Twenty-twenty-vision gorgeous. Can-see-the-stars-and-the-gold as in apples-in-your-eyes gorgeous. And, like someone somewhere is guaranteed to have said, when you’re lost and alone and still find it in you to pause and take stock of all that glistens and flutters, the world’s got to be better for having you in it. Or so you’d think.

“Al-my-friend. How you doing tonight?”
“Still floating, Paolo mio.”
“Dio cane. How you do it?”
“Easy. You got to be as handsome within as without.”

You can read more about it including the first chapter and a foreword by the author at


Some reviews of the previous titles:

'…Leclere has created in Lombard a man with the same headstrong integrity and occasional pig-headedness of Chandler’s Marlowe ... a compelling and rounded character who has you rooting for him from the word go. His investigation is filled with twists and turns which leave you begging for more...'
— CATHERINE ETOE, The Camden New Journal

‘Hard to put down ... absolutely compelling ... The novel is a hymn to lost innocence.’
— JULIA PASCAL, The Jewish Chronicle

‘A stylish and gripping novel ... [the film] is a total waste of a great character like Lombard ...’
— COSMO LANDESMAN, The Sunday Times

‘This by-the-pulses thriller by a talented new writer ... promises maximum satisfaction.’
— ROBERT STONE, author of Dog Soldiers

‘A first rate story of which Lombard is the unforgettable star... A rare find ...’
— LARRY CHOLLET, New Jersey Record

'Raymond Chandler lives again in Eric Leclere’s hard-boiled Xavier Lombard.


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