No More Illusions. . .A Mystery
This is a murder mystery in the style of Elmore Leonard, complete with puffed-up, larger than life characters, a full cast of beautiful women, and a hard-boiled detective, Dylan Blake, at the center of it all. Detective Blake finds himself in the middle of the mystery when he’s assigned to investigate the death of Jack Hamilton, whose car and body are discovered at the bottom of a cliff in the vacation town of Big Sur, California, five hours from his home in Sierra Springs. The closer he looks, the less Hamilton’s death appears to be an accident, and there’s no shortage of suspects.
There’s Big Sur’s Sheriff Kowalski, who failed to notice – or failed to report – that someone had tampered with Hamilton’s brakes. There’s Kate Winslow, Hamilton’s ex-business partner – and as it turns out, his former lover – who reported her suspicions about the crime, but who also mysteriously broke their partnership months before. There’s Philip Winslow, Kate’s ex-husband; was he just jealous of their relationship? And then the whole mystery becomes personal for Detective Blake when someone tries to kill him in the middle of the investigation.
Incredibly, just when Blake is about to nail Hamilton’s murderer, another body turns up, and sets the whole thing in motion again. Now, with Hamilton’s murder solved, we’re dropped into a second layer of mystery, and Blake must pull out the files again, to find out who is behind it all, who might want to cover it all up, and who keeps trying to kill him.
Babka is clearly a talented writer, and he’s given us a compelling, well paced story, with some excellent characters — some we root for, and others we’re happy to see in a body bag. The result is a fun story, perfect for a day at the beach, or a long rainy weekend at home. Watch out for Dirt Crappis, the next iteration in the Detective Dylan Blake series.
|Blue Squirrel Press
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|Mystery, Crime, Thriller