Johnny thought he had the perfect job as Chief of Internal Security for the New England Highlanders basketball team, until he committed suicide. His wife Roseanne couldn't believe that he would choose to end his life and pushed for an investigation. Along with her brother Graham and friend Randy, they carried out their own probe.
The story is told from Randy's point of view. He's been a friend of the family for many years since selling them their first insurance policy. His job has given him many opportunities for investigation, but never as in depth as this case promises to go. At first, I felt a little unsettled by Randy's story telling, but then I realised he was telling the story from the present rather than the past tense as I expected. Once I had read a few chapters, that unsettled feeling went away.
Their investigation proceeds at a realistic pace, at times stalling for days and at others moving ahead in leaps and bounds. This kept me guessing as to what would happen next and when it might happen.
I enjoyed the assortment of characters involved in the plot. Detective Chuck McElroy never quite welcomed the three as he felt it was safest to leave the investigating to the police, but then again, he didn't run them out of town either. It didn't matter that I knew little about professional basketball, it is a backdrop to several characters, one of whom plays an important part of the investigation.
This is definitely not a cosy mystery, it contains a fair number of gruesome deaths, though Mr. Draper has not gone into glorified details, rather he has confined the descriptions of the bodies to that needed for the storyline and not gone beyond to gratuitous gore.
Thanks to author Michael Draper for creating a good book with more than a few interesting plot twists. Mike's latest book Three Strikes and You're Dead is now out in print.
Cover image courtesy of the author.