Henry Spearman, the balding economics professor with a knack for solving crimes, returns in The Mystery of the Invisible Hand - a clever whodunit of campus intrigue, stolen art, and murder.
Having just won the Nobel Prize, Spearman accepts an invitation to lecture at Monte Vista University. He arrives in the wake of a puzzling art heist with plans to teach a course on art and economics - only to be faced with the alleged suicide of womanizing artist-in-residence Tristan Wheeler. When it becomes clear that Wheeler had serious enemies and a murderer is in their midst, Henry Spearman is on the case. Was Wheeler killed by a jilted lover, a cuckolded husband, or a beleaguered assistant? Could there have been a connection between Wheeler’s marketability and his death? From the Monte Vista campus in San Antonio to the halls of Sotheby’s in New York, Spearman traces the connections between economics and the art world, finding his clues in monopolies and the Coase conjecture, auction theory, and the work of Adam Smith. What are the parallels between a firm’s capital and an art museum’s collection? What does the market say about art’s authenticity versus its availability? And what is the mysterious "death effect" that lies at the heart of the case? Spearman must rely on his savviest economic insights to clear up this artful mystery and pin down a killer.
Love the premise of this book - using sound economic principles to solve a murder mystery. Learn a bit of economics while enjoying the story. Well done.
What did you love best about The Mystery of the Invisible Hand?
That there was interesting college level discussions and that the professor genuinely cared about his student's experience.
Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?
I completely adored this novel. I wouldn't call it edge of your seat material. But it was an intelligent environment with smart conversations. New pieces of information about the motives, clues, people involved were dropped in evenly. I did see the killer's motive fairly early on.
What does Kevin Stillwell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
He pronounced all the words correctly (even difficult ones) He didn't read the material in a monotone fashion. He could have made the lectures boring, but he conveyed the Professor's true desire in getting the students involved and keeping it interesting. When he switched voices to convey a different character- he didn't turn the others into cartoon voices. Excellent narration.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Sure, though I can't devote that amount of time with my schedule. But I did listen to it 3 days in a row until I was done.
Any additional comments?
I am definitely going to check out his other books.