This is the first book to feature Russian-born but now Pittsburgh-based private investigator. The book was a finalist for the 1983 Shamus Award for Best Paperback Original PI Novel. The second book in the series (Nevsky’s Demon) was subsequently recalled by the publisher when it was revealed that the story was a plagiarism of John D MacDonald’s Travis McGee novel the The Dreadful Lemon Sky.
Title: Nevsky's Return
Author: Dimitry Gat
Published Date: 1982
Publisher: Avon Books
Series Details: 1st book in the Yuri Nevsky series
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Sardonic and tough, lovable and lovelorn, he’s deeply intrigued by the baroque twists of a case that pits him against the brooding, unpredictable Russian soul.
An attorney with a sharp mind behind her classy blonde looks, she’s a cool WASP with a warm spot in her heart for her gruff partner Nevsky.
Young, charismatic, good looking, he’s suspected of murder, and he’s missing. Some people swear he’s innocent; others refuse to discuss him at all.
A great Russian bear of a man, he’s a dedicated priest who’s sure Nick turned away from a dissolute life…but there’s something the Father’s not telling.
Fair-skinned, sloe-eyed, voluptuous, she’s the kind of woman Nevsky has dreamed about…but his snooping may turn this dream into a lethal nightmare.
From the Dustjacket
Light a candle for death…
Yuri Nevsky, information specialist, finds himself reliving his Russian past when he takes on the case of a missing young man whom the police suspect of murder. The assignment takes Nevsky – and his beautiful blonde partner, Charity Day – to Pittsburgh’s Russian Slope section, a closely knit community where ethnic loyalty is thicker than blood.
A dead drug dealer and a golden cross stolen from a Russian Orthodox church complicate the investigation. And so does an exotic lady lonely for a man’s strong arms.
But as Nevsky perseveres, he is drawn into the dark secrets of an immigrant family’s harrowing past…and brings to light the fantastic motive behind a mystery of holy terror.
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Other Shamus Best Paperback Original PI Novel nominees - 1983