Sons of Sparta
The Godfather as a descendant of the Spartan 300.
Did the warriors of ancient Sparta simply vanish without a trace along with their city, or did they find sanctuary at the southernmost tip of Greece’s mountainous Peloponnese? That stark, unforgiving region’s roots today run deep with a history of pirates, highwaymen, and neighbors ferociously repelling any foreigner foolishly bent on occupying this part of Greece. Less well recorded are the Mani’s families’ strict code of honor and their history of endless vendettas with neighbors and with their own relatives. No wonder their homes looked like fortresses.
When Special Crimes Division Detective Yianni Kouros is summoned from Athens to the Mani by his uncle, Kouros fears his loyalty to his boss, Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis, is about be to be tested by family pressure on the detective to act in some new vendetta, for this uncle once headed the Mani’s most significant criminal enterprise. Instead, Kouros learns the family is about to become rich through the sale of its property—until the uncle is killed, and thus the deal. Acting swiftly to head off a new cycle of violence, Kouros solves the murder. Or so it seems until, back in Athens, Andreas’ probe into deeply entrenched government corruption leads straight back to the Mani. Both cops now confront a host of unexpected twists, unanticipated players, unanswered questions—and people yet to die.
—The Greek Star
#2 Fiction Best Seller (Denver)
Poisoned Pen Bookstore picks for 2014 for The Big Thrill
“Siger’s perfectly plotted sixth mystery set in Greece… paints travelogue-worthy pictures of a breathtakingly beautiful—if politically corrupt—Greece.”
—Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“A lively, gritty plot, an abundance of local color and two righteous heroes.”
“Filled with local color, action, and humor, this story will give readers a taste of modern Greek culture and its ancient roots.”
“Surprisingly funny, Sons of Sparta is a raunchy romp that will leave readers chuckling at the antics of the two irreverent detectives… Larger-than-life characters, an intriguing setting and plenty of twists make Sons of Sparta an irresistible mystery.”
“[I]t’s always fun to read a book that quenches my thirst for new places. Sons of Sparta, which takes place in Greece is a great book for that…You’ll love watching how this investigation weaves together so many different people, motives, and crimes.”
—The Greek Star
“Have a mystery book lover on your Christmas list? If you do, Sons of Sparta by Jeffrey Siger is sure to satisfy… Sons of Sparta has all the elements of a rapid-firing murder mystery—multiple bodies, suspects and motives galore, red herrings, hot trails, cold finishes, and an absolutely splendid ending… This is author Siger’s sixth book in his mystery series featuring Inspector Kaldis. He paints a vivid picture of Greek living and dying, with history and culture throughout. The Greek spin on the classic mystery genre is a welcome addition to the mystery canon.”
—Der Bingle’s Christmas Shopping Guide
“Jeffrey Siger has a hit with Sons of Sparta, a great story and mystery that keeps you guessing till the end.”
“To get into a proper Greek frame of mind, for the last five years the first book I read upon arriving in [the Greek island] Skiathos is the latest novel by Jeff Siger. He writes an excellent mystery series featuring Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis.”
—Deadly Pleasures Magazine
“It’s always nice when someone I like writes a great book, and that’s what Jeffrey Siger has done with his sixth mystery, a real dazzler set in modern Greece and featuring his brilliant, if sometimes besieged, hero, Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis.”
“Jeffrey Siger’s books are a feast for the mind and the senses: an intriguing mystery to solve, one of the best teams of detectives in all of crime fiction, and a wonderful setting all skillfully blended with action, humor, and a touch of steamy sex. I know that I’m preaching to the choir with many, but as for those of you who have yet to read a mystery by Jeffrey Siger… what are you waiting for?”
“I have grown to like Andreas very much in his previous five mystery novels, and am always glad to see a new one hit the shelves… Sons of Sparta is not to be missed.”
“Siger always manages to beautifully combine a police procedural with some of that black humor that allows police to get through the daily grind of dealing with corruption and crime. Although he’s been known to almost predict the next Greek crisis, in this case, Siger’s story of crime and corruption has a much more personal angle. The story of the Mani, descendants of the Spartans, and those formidable Spartan mothers, is a fascinating story of lawlessness and revenge.”
—Lesa’s Book Critiques
“Author Jeffrey Siger and Poisoned Pen Press continue their winning collaboration with this sixth entry in the excellent Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis series.”
—Buried Under Books
“This series is really close to my heart…Discovering this author gave me a renewed interest in the Greek culture, society and history.”
“[Sons of Sparta] was one of my [three] faves of the year.”
“Sons of Sparta was an amazing book. I loved the plot and the storyline towards it…well thought out and wonderfully plotted…a read you cannot pass up.”
—Quirky Book Reviews
“Siger is a gifted writer, he allows the reader to step out of their life and travel to Greece.”
As he drove alone down the highway the tune kept running through his head. An old Greek ballad. He couldn’t shake it. Not since early morning, when his father’s brother called to say, “Come home at once,” offering no more of an explanation than, “It’s a family matter.”
Everyone in his family knew the words that went with the tune, lyrics that spoke of family honor and all that was expected of those duty-bound to protect it. The song told the story of his father’s father and what his family had demanded of him a hundred years before:
In the early 1900s a young medical student studying in Athens received a message from his father to return home at once. The trip from Athens to the Mani, in the southernmost part of Greece’s Peloponnese, took several days. When the student arrived home he learned that his younger sister had humiliated their father by becoming pregnant by a young man in their village. Her lover had proposed to marry his sister, but their father refused. Instead, in front of his sister and her lover he told his son to shoot and kill them both.
At the trial of the brother for killing his sister and her lover, the Judge was about to render his decision when the Judge’s mother stood and shouted at her son, “Just remember before you pass judgment that you murdered your own sister for the very same reason.”
The brother was acquitted and returned to medical school.
The driver shot a quick glance down at the Corinth canal as he passed west from the Greek mainland onto the Peloponnese peninsula.
I wonder what Uncle has in mind, thought Greece’s Special Crimes Division detective Yianni Kouros. Judges weren’t as forgiving these days as they had been in his grandfather’s.
© Jeffrey Siger
Eoin Colfer’s video on Jeffrey Siger’s work
Eoin Colfer raves about Sons of Sparta and the entire Andreas Kaldis series. November 30, 2014
Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis Mysteries