Cover Image: Unnatural History

Unnatural History

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Member Reviews

Milo and Alex are at it again.  This time they are investigating a dysfunctional family and the associated vulnerability and deaths of the homeless.  This was the perfect read.  The pace kept me engaged.  I love the friendship and quirks between these two.  I have read all of Kellerman's book in this series and they do not disappoint.
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What's it about (in a nutshell):
A photography assistant in Los Angeles finds her rich and famous boss murdered in his bed. His latest project is called The Wishers, where homeless people dress up in elaborate costumes representing their dream selves for a photo session. Could this project have anything to do with his murder? Milo Sturgis and Dr. Alex Delaware go into homeless encampments to try and figure out the connection, but what they come away with could be as deadly for them as it was for the original victim.

Actual Reading Experience:

I love the aspects that make this mystery series different from all the others. Dr. Alex Delaware is a psychologist who has a practice out of his home. He is the first-person narrator and approaches cases in an almost Holmesian manner using his intellect and unusually keen observational skills. And paired with Milo, they make an incredible team of fascinating police work and an outsider looking in, providing a look into the minds of all those involved. Since Alex is a psychologist and not a detective, this difference in professions provides a speck of a cozy mystery feel with all the over-the-top characters, red herrings, and focus that go along with that sub-genre. It is not a cozy mystery, and I would never classify it as such. It just has a delightful little piece of that style of mystery.

I also appreciated how the social issues of homelessness, mental health disorders, and the connection between the two are highlighted and handled perfectly, with professionalism and compassion. and I loved that this series’ pace is pretty quick, aided by concise chapters.

Read if you like:
•	A mystery that is a bit police procedural and a bit Holmesian
•	A pair of detectives that will quickly feel like old friends.
•	Relevant social issues are tackled with professionalism and compassion.
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Lieutenant Milo Sturgis and Dr Alex Delaware were once again searching the streets of Los Angeles for a killer. Donny had been murdered - three gunshots to the chest - and uncovering a motive was proving a challenge. Searching back through Donny's family uncovered a myriad of strangeness, all stemming from Donny's father. Donny was a kind, gentle man who tried to help people, and in this case it was the homeless. Could it have been one of them who had done this to Donny?

Gradually, slowly, information was uncovered. But Milo couldn't pin what his thoughts were to any one person. Alex was helpful - yin and yang - but would it prove positive? After more murders, thoughts were cemented. But was there a result in there somewhere?

Unnatural History is #38 in the long-running Alex Delaware series and this wasn't one of Jonathan Kellerman's best in my opinion. Checking back to my previous ratings, it wasn't until #25 that I gave 5 stars. It was good to catch up with Milo and Alex, as well as Robin and Blanche and their koi pond. I'm not sure if I'll continue this series - wait and see :)

With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my digital ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.
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I received an ARC through "NetGalley" and I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.

The story starts with Milo calling Alex to the scene of a murder. A photographer has been murdered and there are not a great deal of clues. The victim is the son of a recluse billionaire who has been married many times and had children with most of his new wives. Milo and Alex also learn of a series of photo's hat were related to the homeless and ultimately play a role in discovering who the killer was.

As the investigation was being carried out, there were several other murders that also took place and were related to the photographer's murder. As they got closer to finding the killer, Milo and Alex also had to be careful as well.

To learn who the killer was, what was the reason for the later collections, how the billionaire's large family played a role and what clue was most important, then you need to read this book, it is well worth it.
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I started reading Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware series when I was in high school. It's been a while since I've been in Alex Delaware's world and I very much enjoyed this new installment. Unnatural History was everything that I always liked about Jonathan Kellerman's novels. The pace kept me turning pages. The friendship between Delaware and Sturgis is as strong as ever. Even with this strong friendship, Unnatural History was a very plot driven novel.. I find myself pulled into when Alex Delaware uses his profession as a psychologist to aid in the investigation - this adds another depth to the story that continues to pull me in. I am looking forward to any future Alex Delaware story.
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Photographer Donny Klement has begun his magnum opus: the Wisher series. He’s recruited homeless people to pose in elaborate costumes reflecting their unfulfilled dreams. Paying his models generously, Donny believes his art is beneficent. Others, however, find using the homeless in this way denigrating.

Before Donny can complete his project, he’s murdered, shot three times in the apartment above his studio. When Lieutenant Milo Sturgis is assigned the case, he asks psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware to assist him. They soon learn that Donny is the son of elusive billionaire Victor Klement. One of his half-siblings might have killed him for a larger slice of their father’s inheritance. Or, his death might be related to his Wisher project. 

What little evidence they find is inconclusive, and Milo’s team seems to futilely drive around Los Angeles looking for the homeless captured by Donny’s camera in the hopes they might have some information. But the revelation of new bodies hints at an unexpected and dangerous killer.

UNNATURAL HISTORY by Jonathan Kellerman is the 38th book in the Alex Delaware series! I remember reading the first three novels in 19-cough-cough when I was in middle school. At that time, I wanted to be a psychologist AND I loved mysteries, so **clouds part to unveil the sun**. I’m amazed that almost forty years later, the books are still reliably high quality. The best part of (most of) them is the relationship between Alex and Milo while the worst part of (most of them) is the relationship between Alex and his partner Robin. [She’s a little too agreeable and flat for my taste, but I don’t want her to take up much of the books, either.] And Los Angeles always provides a vivid mise en scene. The mystery in UNNATURAL HISTORY allows Kellerman to discuss the issues around homelessness which are complicated. If you like detective procedurals, you can’t go wrong with this series.
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Another page turner in the Alex Delaware series. It is not necessary to read all the books in the series as there is a clear beginning and end and all characters are described so that you understand their contributions. Truly is hard to put down and will keep you interested and guessing 'who dunnit'.
I  received an advanced reader copy @ my request but was under no obligation to review the book. Many thanks to the author, publishers, and Net Galley for allowing me to read this book. 
Read ,& enjoy!
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Thank you to NetGalley for an advanced digital copy of this book.

When a young photographer is found murdered in his LA studio, it is not unusual. However, when Detective Milo Sturgis starts investigating THIS murder, he quickly knows that the expertise of psychologist Dr Alex Delaware will be helpful.. Who is the victim? His family is fractured and difficult to locate. Is this his home, or does he have other properties?  There are NO clues. Nothing to indicate exactly why this man was murdered. 

His assistant, who found the body when she arrived for work, is no help. She is so freaked out she can hardly talk, and Alex calms her down, but she is still not able to shed any light on the possible motive. Under psychological care herself, her mother doesn't want her to be questioned further.

While looking through the man's possessions, a portfolio of portraits is found, showing before and after pictures of homeless people dressed up at their "biggest wish". Do these portraits have something to do with the murder? And, in a city with over 10,000 homeless, how do they find these people? 

Then, other murders occur. One is a man who the police suspect helped find these people to pose for the portraits. But he seems to have been killed BEFORE the photographer. Then other bodies are found - those of some of the portrait subjects.

A twisty look at the underbelly of modern-day LA, the answer is surprisingly mundane, but hard to find.
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Psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware gets a call from best friend LA police Detective Milo Sturgis to meet at the scene of a murder. A young assistant found her boss shot dead. The victim was a photographer. Who would want him dead? When more bodies turn up a connection is found; they were photographed by the first victim or at least knew him. What did they know that would make them victims of the same killer....
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Unnatural History is part of the long-running Alex Delaware series but works just as well as a standalone mystery. I have read every book in this series and it's amazing to me how fresh and unique each book is. They all have clever, complex plots and the amazing teamwork and friendship between psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware and LAPD Lt. Milo Sturgis. 

Alex is brought in on this latest case by Milo in part to deal with a very anxious witness who was the personal assistant to the murder victim. The victim was a photographer whose latest project of photographing members of the homeless community was controversial. The young man also came from a fractured, dysfunctional family that was very wealthy so even though everyone seemed to like the victim, there was still no shortage of suspects. 

I enjoyed seeing the investigation unfold with Alex assisting Milo and his team as they try to solve this difficult case. When the solution was revealed it made sense, but if there were clues pointing in the killer's direction, I missed them. This isn't my favorite in the series, but is still an excellent, entertaining mystery. I love this series and will continue to follow to see what Kellerman has in store next for these wonderful characters.

I received an advance copy of this ebook at no cost from NetGalley and Ballantine Books, but my review is voluntary and unbiased.
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Don't worry if you haven't read any of the 37 (!) books which precede this latest installment in the much loved LA detective series featuring LT Milo Sturgis and psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware- it will be fine as a standalone.  Someone has killed Donny, the photographer son of a reclusive billionaire who has multiple children and contact with none of them.  Donny was photographing homeless people after dressing them up in fine clothes- did one of them do it?  That's the question that hangs over the case, especially as things get darker.  Milo and Alex interview Donny's assistant (who worshipped him), his girlfriend (who despaired of him), and his siblings who barely knew him thanks to the odd family situation but they keep coming back to the unhoused.  No spoilers from me. Fans will be happy to be back with these two even though the mystery isn't as complex as some and the small details that spark joy are less (Milo's clothes, the food, etc).  Robin and Blanche make appearances too.  Thanks to netgalley for the ARC. A good addition to the series.
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As typical of this series, Det. Sturgis calls in his good friend, Alex Delaware, to help with a puzzling case. The victim is a young photographer of considerable means who had a fascination with the city’s homeless. Donny’s intentions were good, however may have been a key factor in his demise. He is an interesting player, identifying a variety of suspects and motives along the way, Although the pace builds as the story progresses, the level of tension and suspense seemed tamer than in other works I have read by this author. Nonetheless, a well-written and interesting read that highlights the plight of the homeless, a real-life topic many prefer to ignore.
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Milo and Alex are working together again to solve the murder of the son of a ridiculously wealthy man. There is way too much info about this young man, his friends, and family. It all has to be shifted through and Alex is the one to do it. This is another whodonit that is Alex's area of expertise. Problem is with every clue there are multiple other roads to go down, more people to interview and more questions that need answering.
Classic Jonathan Kellerman murder/mystery that you can't put down!
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I am amazed at how well Jonathan Kellerman keeps this series fresh. This is the 38th book in the Alex Delaware series and it is every bit as good as the first book in 1985. I have been a fan of this series since the beginning and unlike other series where the characters and their relationships change and evolve, this one focuses primarily on the police procedures and the crime drama, minimally weaving their personal relationships throughout. Because of that you can read each book as a standalone and not feel like you are missing anything. Great characters, well paced plot and a few unexpected twists. Highly recommended

Thanks to NetGalley and Ballantine Books for an advanced reader copy.
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Unnatural History by Jonathan Kellerman brings us another thriller staring Alex Delaware and Milo Sturgis. In this case some perspective is brought to the homeless situation that society is dealing with.
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I have read a few of Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware mysteries over the years, but have sometimes found the endings to be a bit too intense. Events always seem to ratchet up quickly. I am usually more interested in the police procedural side of the mystery. How do they solve the case, who are possible suspects? Here, the mystery itself was quite interesting (as always in Kellerman's books), and Kellerman's writing style and characters were wonderful (as always). One can jump in and out of the Delaware series without necessarily knowing all of the books, although there are occasional  call-backs to earlier cases. 

In Unnatural History, psychologist Alex Delaware once again helps detective Milo Sturgis untangle the many possibilities, this time in the murder of a young photographer. The police procedural element of the story was quite interesting: how do you go about slowly narrowing down the options, especially when the victim is a nice guy, liked by everyone. I enjoyed the way that Delaware and Sturgis throw around ideas and build theories slowly based on the facts as they become clear. There were a number of fascinating characters and I found myself musing over possibilities as a reader. I did not see the ending coming, although perhaps I should have. I would say that this novel's ending is thrilling, but far less intense than other Delaware endings, I enjoyed it enough that I plan to go back and revisit the last few Delaware novels that I have missed.

My thanks to NetGalley and Ballentine Books for an opportunity to read an ARC.
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I received this book as an ARC from NetGalley.

I have previously read and enjoyed many of Jonathan Kellerman's mysteries involving Dr. Alex Delaware and Detective Milo Sturgis. In this episode, a wealthy photographer is posing homeless people in their "dream" environments. When Donny is found shot to death, Alex and Milo are called in to solve the case.

To make matters more complex, Donny is part of a highly dysfunctional family.

Who is responsible for his murder...someone from the homeless community who has been in his home to be photographed or is it a family member or anybody else?
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This is the third in the series with Margaret Nolan. You don't have to have read the other books to enjoy.
There is a murder or not, The wild and crazy world of Hollywood.
Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC and to the publisher Minotaur Books.
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There is no mystery/thriller author I love more than this one. I have read everyone and am listening to all the ones available on Audible. I feel like I have pictures in my mind of how they look, sound, and work with each other. Each book is unique, no mystery the same. Sometimes old characters show up from time to time. The series is one that I hope never ends, but if some day it does I will be content with all the previous books. If you are wanting a great series to last for awhile, give Alex and Milo a try. 

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by NetGalley
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Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and the author, for an ARC of this book, in exchange for an honest review. 
"Unnatural History" is #38 in Mr. Kellerman’s Alex Delaware series & I have been a fan & reader of this series from the very beginning. 
As I have stated before, I love this series because I love the relationship that exists between the 2 main characters, Alex & Miles, & I love how all of the murder mysteries that they are involved in are very complex, original & well thought out. 
Many series authors become stale over time but not in this case. 
"Unnatural History" had so many twists & turns that kept me very interested & entertained that I couldn’t wait to find some free time everyday to be able to continue reading it. 
I am anxiously waiting for book #39.
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