Hi, I’m Andreas Kaldis, and I serve as Chief Inspector of the Greek National Police Force’s Special Crimes Division based in Athens Central Police Headquarters. My division is charged with investigating matters of national concern or potential corruption, and our broad jurisdictional mandate has us travelling all over Greece to unearth the truth about the most serious issues, political and otherwise, confronting our nation.
I’d be less than candid if I didn’t admit that the sensitive nature of our investigations often puts my unit at odds with the politically powerful, but as an admittedly politically incorrect, second-generation cop, I take great pride in how we’ve been able to maintain our reputation as honest observers of our times.
Our successes on that score we owe to a couple of things, the most important being our unfettered access to all levels of Greek society, be it the seamy underbelly of its most degenerate bottom rung, or the glittering lifestyles of its movers and shakers. For the former, I owe my colleague Tassos, whose lifetime of practicing “old cop ways” on the force has him trusted—and feared—by those on both sides of the law. To Lila, my wife and mother of our children, who made the ungodly mistake of marrying for love, I owe my connections to the rich and powerful she’s known through her lifetime at the pinnacle of Athens society.
But the strongest woman in my life—please don’t tell Lila—is Maggie, the mother superior of Athens Police headquarters. I was lucky enough to land Maggie as my secretary when I returned from a brief stint as police chief on the Greek Aegean island of Mykonos, bringing with me the brash young rookie cop, Yianni Kouros, I’ve come to rely upon as my strong right hand.
My division’s had celebrated successes over the years, even been written up in that American newspaper, The New York Times. But from time to time this American author gets ahold of one of our investigations and turns it into a book. He calls it fiction, and because of that, once in a while a reviewer might take a poke at something in the story as not believable.
I admit that sometimes that riles me up, but mostly I laugh, because invariably the part dished as not believable is the part that’s true! Besides, it’s not my worry. My job is ferreting out hidden secrets to solve my cases. I leave the story telling part to the American guy.
Perhaps he’ll find solace in knowing that the Greeks realize what he’s writing is based on fact.
Got to run, I have an appointment with the Prime Minister. He wants to thank me for what I did for him a while back. The American wrote about it in a book coming out in September called Santorini Caesars. I wonder if his readers will figure out which parts are based on secrets some in government would prefer never saw the light of day?
Santorini Caesars is the 8th book in the Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis mystery series, published by Poisoned Pen Press, September 2016.
When a young demonstrator is publicly singled out and assassinated by highly trained killers in the heart of protest-charged Athens, Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis is convinced the killing was meant not to take out a target, but as a message. A message from whom? To whom? And why?
Kaldis’ search for answers leads him and his team to the breathtakingly beautiful island of Santorini, heralded in legend as the lost island of Atlantis, and to eavesdrop on a hush-hush gathering of Greece’s top military leaders looking to come up with their own response to the overwhelming crises and uncertainties their country faces.
Is it a coup d’état, or something else? Greece is no stranger to violence upending duly elected governments and memories of the nation’s last junta dictatorship years still burn in the minds of all who lived through the Regime of the Colonels. The answer is by no means clear, but as suspects emerge and international intrigues evolve, the threat of another, far more dramatic assassination grows ever more likely―as does the realization that only Kaldis can stop it.
But at what price? Greece’s government is in chaos, its goals and leadership are suspect, and Kaldis is forever at odds with its methods. Life is not the same, nor is it likely to return to better days any time soon. With a new child on the way, and their young son coming face-to-face with the harsh nature of the world around him, Kaldis and his wife wonder if carrying on the fight matters anymore.
It is a time for testing character, commitment, and the common good. And for saving the nation from chaos.
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Meet the author
Jeffrey Siger is an American living on the Aegean Greek island of Mykonos. A former Wall Street lawyer, he gave up his career as a name partner in his own Manhattan law firm to write mystery-thrillers telling more than fast-paced stories. His Lefty and Barry Award nominated novels aim at exploring serious societal issues confronting modern day Greece in a tell-it-like-it-is style while touching upon the country’s ancient roots. Jeff also serves as Chair of the National Board of Bouchercon, America’s largest mystery convention, and as Adjunct Professor of English at Washington & Jefferson College, teaching mystery writing. Connect with Jeffrey at www.jeffreysiger.com.
All comments are welcomed.
Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a print copy of Santorini Caesars. US entries only, please. The giveaway will end September 7, 2016 at 12 AM (midnight) EST. Good luck everyone!