Sunday, June 03, 2018
Murder to the Metal by Annie Hogsett
much humor as Annie Hogsett's debut. But, the complex storyline and the heart in this mystery make up for it.
Allie Harper is the narrator. She and Thomas Bennington III, a blind professor, had just met when he won the MondoMegaMillions lottery and changed their lives forever. Now, they're hiding out in a rented mansion, with their bodyguard, Otis. And, they've loosely formed T & A Detective Agency to solve "mysteries of the heart". One of Allie's former co-workers at the library is their first client. Allie says Loretta Coates was always high-maintenance and time-consuming. Her case is certainly time-consuming, and it turns everything Allie and Tom and Otis believe upside-down.
"The Lloyd Case" seems pretty straightforward. Loretta loved Lloyd Bunker, and he went missing four months ago. Loretta knows he's dead, but she wants to know what happened. Otis, an ex-cop, still has connections, and they can trace his car on Cleveland roads, making every green light, until the car stops dead. And, when a foot is found, the crew guesses that Lloyd was stopped dead, too. But, why? Maybe it was connected with Lloyd's last job or his address book?
A & T Detective Agency learn all kinds of things as they investigate "The Lloyd Case". They learn about scrapping, the invasion of abandoned or empty houses by criminals who strip the house of all metal. They learn about a connection to scrapping and drugs and other crimes. Worst of all, though, they learn that someone has invaded the security of their mansion, and Allie and Tom are once again in danger. Someone wants those millions, and it appears someone is powerful enough and tech savvy enough to steal the money and invade their privacy.
In Murder to the Metal, it's the relationships that stand out. There's respect and trust between Allie and Otis, and even Tony Valerio, a policeman who is frustrated with Allie, learns to work with the team. And, there's such a powerful connection between Allie and Tom that she understands his lack of hope when the confident man, who is already blind, loses his hearing as a result of an explosion. It's the love, the trust, and the relationships that make Murder to the Metal so successful.
Looking for mysteries that are a little different? Try Too Lucky to Live, and follow it up with Murder to the Metal.
Annie Hogsett's website is www.anniehogsett.com
Murder to the Metal by Annie Hogsett. Poisoned Pen Press, 2018. ISBN 97814641209994 (paperback), 318p.
FTC Full Disclosure - I received the book to review for a journal.