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Gone to Dust

(Nils Shapiro #1)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  1,312 Ratings  ·  257 Reviews
Set in Minnesota, Gone to Dust is the debut private eye murder mystery from Emmy Award-winning Seinfeld writer Matt Goldman.

A brutal crime. The ultimate cover-up. How do you solve a murder with no useable evidence?

Private detective Nils Shapiro is focused on forgetting his ex-wife and keeping warm during another Minneapolis winter when a former colleague, neighboring Edina
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published August 15th 2017 by Forge
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Diane S ☔
Oct 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Nils Shapiro, just love the contradiction in that name, is a private investigator in Minnesota who is called on by a past friend and colleague to assist the local police in a most unusual case. A woman is found murdered in her home, covered with bags of vacuum dust. Try to separate the evidence from the garbage, a little difficult for a police force with little experience in murder.

Loved the sassiness of this, Nils is quite a character, sarcastic and not at all intimidated by upper management, s
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
It's a fun, quick read with a likable main character. Based on my undetectably low knowledge of Minnesota, I thought that the setting and local color were great. A few quibbles on detail, do tweezers clog in cold climates? But the story moved right along, and he made me laugh.
Paul Falk
This (Preview Excerpt) ARC was provided by NetGalley. Appreciation sent to Tor Forge - MacMillan for making this release available. My unbiased review follows.

In an excerpt of his debut novel, Matt Goldman narrates an exquisitely well-written storyline. The characters come well-developed leaving no room for confusion. If this is a taste of things to come from him, I'll look forward to his forthcoming release.

PI Nils Shapiro (Shap) is called to a murder scene in the sleepy town of Edina, Minnesot
Aug 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
I discovered this book, Gone to Dust by Matt Goldman through my public library's Overdrive service. I was looking for an old-fashioned private detective story; and since this summer has been especially hot and humid, I was also hoping for a story which would allow me to visualize being in a cooler, more comfortable climate. As it turns out, this book was almost perfect for my needs. I listened to the audiobook and it was narrated by MacLeod Andrews.

This book is set in Minnesota and takes place d
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 9-dnf
Let me start by saying I liked the main character, Nils Shapiro. He felt realistic. Smart, witty, didn’t kowtow to the Chief of Police. Still loves his ex-wife, but also still searching for love.

I also think the author writes well. Words flow easy and quickly. There might be too many brand names bandied about. The story was interesting for as far as I read. That’s right, I didn’t read the complete book. I skipped to the last few chapters and found out who and why and what Nils had in his future.
Linda Strong

Private Detective Nils Shapiro gets a call from his good friend, Detective Anders Ellegaard to take a look at a murder scene with him. Maggie Somerfield was found dead in her bedroom, covered with the dust from hundreds of emptied vacuum cleaner bags. The dust continues all through the house.

Since any and all DNA has been compromised, the cops and Nils "assume" that Maggie knew her killer. But without any clues or leads, this may become a cold cold case.

I only received a s
Nov 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017-pub
This was a very well constructed "who-done-it" mystery with all of the loose ends neatly tied by the end. The setting of Minneapolis is very well depicted and private detective Nils "Shap" Shapiro has an appealing combo of vulnerability and toughness. This isn't due to be published until August 2017 but I'm looking forward to more "Shap" books.

The narrative and character development is a nice blend of Lee Child and Sue Grafton and fans of either would enjoy this book.

Thanks to Macmillan for the
Dec 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book was a wonderful read. Nils Shapiro, a Swedish Jew as he refers to himself, living in Minneapolis and working as a private eye gets a call from his friend Ellegard who is a detective in the Edina PD. A murder has taken place in Edina and the local PD is in over there heads. Shap is hired to help out.

For those who do not know Minneapolis, Edina is an area of the city for the wealthy. My kids lived in Minneapolis and both of them worked in Edina, food service and retail. So, I appreciated
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this mystery! It's a brilliant whodunnit that had me guessing until the very end. Matt Goldman was one of the writers of Seinfeld (one of my all time favorite sitcoms). I'm happy he decided to try his hand at writing a novel. He combines humor with mystery and his book is very descriptive (almost like a screenplay). I could see this book as a movie as it's very cinematic. The story features a private detective called Nils Shapiro who's been hired by the police in a Minneapolis ...more
Sep 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Oh can you tell that this author is a screen writer/ conversational master at scriptwritering for TV! And that aspect of this book IS entertaining.

The laugh lines in Nils' "think" (you almost can hear the laugh track response) come quick and furious at the beginning and after page 40 or 50 they still drip laugh tears down through the copy. I did laugh. And at times they (the quips) are 5 star quality too- the wordage. I loved, loved the one where he saw the "smile" of a stranger and the entire M
Renee (
This murder mystery is narrated by Nils Shapiro, former police officer turned private detective who's made a name for himself as a pretty successful PI in Minneapolis. I really enjoyed hearing from Nils right away in the first few chapters. I thought he seemed smart, yet sarcastic, with more of that dry sense of humor that I would imagine is very hard to pull off as a writer. I was immediately immersed in the frigid Minneapolis winter and thinking how hard it would be to live in a place that col ...more
Elizabeth George
This is a first person narrative told in the POV of the private detective. He's got good voice and attitude although his circumstances are rather hackneyed: lives in a dump, in love with his ex-wife who loves him back but doesn't want to be married to him, wise-cracking tough guy. I enjoyed his attitude and some of his off-the-cuff remarks. If you like hard-boiled detective novels that are a fast read, this would work for you. If you want more meat, I'd try something else.
lucky little cat
Nifty "traditional" mystery à la Philip Marlowe with up-to-the-minute modern characters and unguessable (but clever) plot twists. Nils Shapiro, a world-weary but idealistic PI, gets called in to investigate a murder where the crime scene has been powdered with hundreds of vacuum cleaner bags' worth of dust, therefore hundreds of extra DNA profiles. Shapiro's thoroughly likable, as is his supporting cast of friends, ex-spouse, mystery women and other regulars. Various Minneapolis locales and busi ...more
Mar 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Minnesota private investigator Nils Shapiro gets a call from his school colleague Detective Ellegaard about assisting with a murder. Upon arriving at the scene, Nils finds a dead woman in her bed with the entire house filled with dirt from hundreds of vacuum cleaner bags. As the police department hires him to help with the investigation, of course the usual main suspects include the ex-husband and the current boyfriend. When the FBI wants him to lay off the case and he is fired, Nils continues i ...more
Jun 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars!
Nils Shapiro is a private eye with a smart mouth, an ex-wife he can’t forget, and a determination to get to the truth no matter the consequences. When he is called in on a murder where a woman’s killer covers the crime scene with dust and debris from hundreds of vacuum cleaner bags (thus virtually destroying the chance of recovering DNA evidence), he knows that this case will be a challenge- and he’s ready for it.
Goldman’s debut has everything- a unique crime scene, an incredibly enga
Dec 16, 2017 rated it liked it
GONE TO DUST. (2017). Matt Goldman. ***.
This debut novel from Mr. Goldman introduces us to his protagonist, Nils Shapiro, a private eye based in Minneapolis. One hint to start off: Get yourself a street map of the city to keep by your side while you read this. You will find it ever so helpful. I lived in that city for seventeen years, and still found myself lost in Shapiro’s wanderings. At some point in time, Goldman must have read too many detective novels that featured the private eye wanderin
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
The plot kept the pages turning and I got a kick out of the Minneapolis setting, but good grief were there some dumb narrative decisions.
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
After the below average mystery/detective books I’ve read recently, I was glad to come across this new author Matt Goldman, who’s delivering his first book with Gone to Dust. His writing style is very fluent and the plot kept me captivated. I truly liked the main character, Nils Shapiro, a Private Investigator, operating in the greater Minneapolis area. I liked his down-to-earthness, kindness and sassiness. I liked how he never missed an opportunity to speak his mind, where needed; a fact he can ...more
May 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-own
I loved this book! To start with, it's a very clever and original idea for a murder. The plot is well-developed and kept me guessing right up until the end. I LOVE the main character, Nils Shapiro. I'm so glad the author is writing another book in this series because I definitely want more. I've never lived in Minnesota, but living in Illinois, I can relate to the descriptions of the snowy winter in this book. I think the best part of of book for me was it had a great blend of humor along with b ...more
RoseMary Achey
Apr 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
An unusual murder mystery and an exceptionally likeable private investigator make up this debut novel. A few good twist will throw you off track. An quick and enjoyable read.
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic murder mystery! Keeps you wanting more each and every page. I highly recommend this book if you like a great murder mystery. Great detail in writing and makes you feel like you physically there trying to solve it yourself. As soon as I thought I knew who committed the murder, I found out I was wrong. I think I changed my mind on the murder at least 4 times.
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I went into this expecting a darker, noir-ish detective novel. Instead I found it to be an often funny, strangely "cozy" mystery. I say strangely cozy because PI Nils "Shap" Shapiro is no Miss Marple or Hercules Poirot, but the mystery unfolded in a very traditional manner, which would have made Agatha Christie proud. Nils is like many detectives in that his personal life is not great, and while he struggles with his personal issues, it was kind of refreshing to not have him end up in the super- ...more
Scottsdale Public Library
I don’t often read mystery novels, but the premise of this one caught my attention: our “hero” Nils Shapiro (putting that in quotations, as we all know mystery novel heroes can be quite flawed) lives in Minneapolis and makes his living as a private detective. And on a side note, I enjoyed how Minnesota itself figures as character in this book. His friend and former colleague, a police detective, asks Nils to assist with a complicated murder case. The victim’s body, along with all surface space i ...more
Anne - Books of My Heart
This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart

I saw Gone to Dust when it was an audible daily deal and went right out to the library to reserve it. The combination of mystery and setting of Minnesota sold me. I lived in Minnesota for 30 years and went to graduate school there.  I love all the details streets, restaurants, etc.  In writing this review, I see the writer went to school at the University of Minnesota but also wrote for Seinfeld, Ellen, and other tv shows.

It was a very enjoya
Jul 15, 2018 rated it did not like it
Won’t be finishing.

Usually I love this type of book, but the writing was just too choppy. There were many times that I had to reread sections or sentences because Goldman was trying to write a one-liner joke, but they never fit the paragraph or the situation so Nils just came across as an asshole or like he was trying to make light of serious situations.

I don’t mind a funny detective, but being funny is all about timing and Goldman’s timing was awful.

Also be prepared for jokes and reminders almo
Jan 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Le prémisse de ce roman était vraiment intéressant et je l'ai ressenti comme étant divisé en 3 parties.
J'ai beaucoup accroché avec le premier 1/3. Par contre, le 2ème était un peu moins intéressant avec un peu de redondance et l'ennuie a commencé à s'installer.
Heureusement, l'histoire se rattrape un peu avec le dernier 1/3 même si la fin n'était pas folichonne.
Bref, une lecture en demi teinte dans l'ensemble.
It was a decent mystery, but the main character Nils Shapiro was much more interesting. He's a PI, ex-cop, and intelligent. He has a sense of sassy humor, and it's great to read about (listen). I listened to the audiobook read by MacLeod Andrews, and he did a great job making Nils come to life.
Betty Morrissey
I mostly liked this because of Nils. His house is a shit box.. I get that.
But I am not a huge fan of books that come to a conclusion by the police explaining it all to the person that "did" it.
Feb 15, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. This, and its protagonist, became more engaging as it went along, and of course I loved all the hyper-local references. I will definitely read book 2, due out this summer.
Mar 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
As a Minneapolitan, I thoroughly enjoyed reading a murder mystery anchored in my wintry city, highlighting restaurants and landmarks that are part of my regular routine. Goldman created a compelling story with Nils Shapiro as a private detective who is personally floundering through his life while holding a witty perspective on his circumstances. (Goldman is a former writer from the show "Seinfeld".) The woman who was murdered had enough people with curious motives circling around her life (ex-h ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Please add page count 3 19 Apr 18, 2018 06:41AM  
MATT GOLDMAN is a playwright and Emmy Award-winning television writer for Seinfeld, Ellen, and other shows. He brings his signature storytelling abilities and light touch to his debut novel Gone to Dust. He began his career as a stand-up comedian while attending the University of Minnesota before moving to Los Angeles to write full-time.

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“But he passed over the highway then pulled into Bunny’s, a sports bar popular with the over-thirty crowd from Edina and St. Louis Park. I drove around the block, giving Fine plenty of time to find a parking place and go in. Ten minutes later, I walked into Bunny’s and sat at the bar. Weekday lunchtime was a mix of blue and white collars.” 0 likes
“That's the thing with Jameson. Some bottles are smooth. Some bottles burn like hell. You don't know which until it's open. I'd caught a bad one and told myself it'd get better with each sip.” 0 likes
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