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Shirley Johnson's Review of No Time to Mourn

Midwest Book Review graphic   Johnson is a frequent reviewer in MidWest Book Review.
I love a mystery that has the savor of the old TV shows such as Magnum PI, the kind where the private eye is street smart, smooth and real to life. That's what I found in my read of "No Time To Mourn."

Jim Wolf is our PI, living on a boat and having a pet python named Monty. Yes, you read that right; but before you wrinkle your nose let me say that old Monty proves to be very instrumental in the solving of this case. A little off the beaten track for a character, don't you think? Good job.

Wolf is thrust into a murder investigation by his ex-girlfriend and helper Lori.

He knew this investigation was going to be different from the moment he met Susan. Why was he relating to this woman whose husband had just been killed and who was being stalked by a man she called Red. Why did he think her past held the answers and what was it about her that made this whole thing different from other cases he had worked on? Wolf didn't know, but Red only made it more personal when he attempted to kill him right after his initial meeting with Susan.

Unfortunately Susan is killed not long into the story and we are introduced to several suspects such as her colorful step children Junior and Edith, who certainly would have a lot to gain from the death of both Susan and her husband, but that answer seemed far to simple for Wolf to swallow.

The story twists and turns as we are taken down the road of corruption, lies and greed as other suspects are introduced into the story. Dark and seedy, these suspects add a good chill to the read causing Wolf to be more determined to dig deeper into this mystery.

No, there was more to this investigation than was meeting the eye and Wolf enlists the help of a reporter named Constance who adds a little spice to the drama and also conflicting emotions to our already confused PI.

The author opens the mind and emotions of Wolf to the reader. Not only is he trying to solve a double murder but he is also dealing with commitment issues and personal life problems, this makes him real in your minds eye as you are included in his inward struggles as he tries to make sense of his own life and his personal relationships.

No Time To Mourn is a mystery written with a flare from the past mixed with the present. It is a story that shows how greed overshadows the preservation of life and it is a story that brings out inward emotions as we watch Wolf work through his own fears of personal involvements with those who love him. If you want to read a good mystery with a slice of personal struggles with the main character, this one is for you. Very good job.

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