Tuesday, June 2, 2015

A Small Town Mystery

Leah, the only detective in the small town of Alvin, Alabama, is raising her two children, Abe and Carry, by herself. When Carry asks for a visit to a psychic for her Christmas present, the whole family goes. Before doing Carry's reading, the psychic focuses on Leah giving her clues to a murder that is about to occur.

Leah doesn't quite believe what she's been told, but when the body of a woman turns up in a local lake and the clues match the psychic's cryptic description, she wonders if there is a connection.

I had several problems with this book. The characters, particularly Abe and his friend Dewey, are engaging. However, the dialog imitates the speech patterns of the characters in this southern Alabama town making if difficult to read. It also makes the characters, including Leah, sound uneducated.

The mystery is much too easy to figure out. The author gives it away in the preface. Once you read the introduction every clue is obvious. I think it would have been a better mystery without the preface. The police procedures are also poorly done. This is a small town police station, but even so, putting the picture of a maimed victim on the front page of the newspaper seems out of line.

The author tries to give a humerus twist to some of the action, particularly the scenes between Abe and Dewey, but
even this pales because the dialog is so poorly done.

I reviewed this book for the Amazon Vine Program.