435. REVIEW: The Dirt-Brown Derby ~ Ed Lynskey ~ Mystery/Crime


Title: The Dirt-Brown Derby
Author: Ed Lynskey
Publisher: Mundania Press LLC
Website of Publisher: http://www.mundania.com
Genre: Mystery/Crime
Publication Date: August 2006
ISBN: Trade paperback ISBN-10: 1-59426-232-2
Trade paperback ISBN-13: 978-1-59426-232-6
eBook ISBN-10: 1-59426-233-0
eBook ISBN-13: 978-1-59426-233-3
Length: eBook = 170 pages,
Format: Paperback, eBook

Mrs. Mary Taliaferro, a rich woman who raises thoroughbred horses, hires Frank Johnson, PI, for a $200,000 retainer. Frank is learn the details of her daughter Emily’s murder despite the fact that the sheriff believes her horse supposedly trampled her. He spends a harrowing few days in the town of Kaiser fighting such obstacles as Sheriff Pettigrew, Stanley Pettigrew (Mrs. Taliaferro’s gate guard), Adam and a couple of Kilbys (the town toughs), and leads that turned into dead ends. Frank Johnson wondered many times if this job was really worth $200,000, but after a second body turned up and the gardener disappeared, he decided it did.

Mr. Lynskey does a fine job writing this first person account of a hardboiled detective who has a snappy way of talking. His descriptions are just as snappy, not bogged down with too many details or unneeded words. He has even included one of the funniest seduction scenes I have ever read and another that is not quite so funny. Mr. Lynskey has mixed in red herrings that have Frank Johnson spinning his ‘imaginary’ wheels, building suspense that tightens the nerve endings and keeps the reader wondering what could possibly happen next to Frank Johnson. Will Frank live to tell the tale? Who did murder Emily and Pierre? Should Frank give in to Mrs. Taliaferro’s seduction?

I like the fast way the book reads, the way Mr. Lynskey balances description, dialog and action. His way of writing is a total surprise to me, but a pleasant surprise and change. The twist at the end was perfect. And I like Frank Johnson, P.I.

Author Bio:
Ed Lynskey’s crime fiction novels include THE DIRT-BROWN DERBY (Mundania Press, 2006), THE BLUE CHEER (Point Blank/Wildside Press), PELHAM FELL HERE (Mundania Press, 2007), and TROGLODYTES (Mundania Press, 2008). A science fiction novel, THE QUETZAL MOTEL (Mundania Press) is due out in 2007. His work has also appeared in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine.

Lucille P Robinson
Alternative-Read.com Reviewer

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Author: Sassy Brit, Author Assistant

Founder and Owner of Alternative-Read.com author personal and virtual assistant. Editor and reviewer for #altread since 2005.

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