Sam Jenkins is a chief in Prospect Tennessee, a small town with little crime. When an aging actress, Floozy and her young lover, are found in bed murdered by shotgun, Sam investigates the case himself.
Trevor is Floozy’s recently widowed husband and the first suspect, who better than the spouse of the cheater. But Sam soon learns their marriage was open. At least partially. Floozy enjoyed sex and Trevor enjoyed hearing about her escapades with other men. Most often younger.
Floozy’s lover is the son of a high priced attorney and kind of a screw up. He’s in his thirties and out of work. Suddenly the lover’s father is thought to have a connection and soon Sam adds the lover’s ex-fiancés parents to the list possible suspects.
With the help of a deputy, the desk SGT, and a willing receptionist of one of the suspects, Sam puts together a who-done-it party in the vein of Nero Wolf, one of Sam’s favorite detectives. He asks a series of questions, taking the gathered participants through a series of scenarios until one confesses.
Wayne Zurl does a wonderful job of describing the characters in terms reminiscent of the 1930’s/40’s detectives where women are dames and men wear expensive suits. His colorful metaphors bring life to the scenery.
The narrator David Colacci, narrates the story with the pacing of an old friend telling a tale. His inflections are spot on and really give the noir feel, the Nero Wolf of a read. There are multiple characters in the book and David Colacci lends a distinct voice to each. Male or female, with an excellent British accent, slow country handy man, and the quick smart speech of top notch lawyer.
I enjoyed the story as much for the narrators voice as for the plot. My one disappointment was the author didn’t give enough information along the way for me to pick out who the murderer was, instead waiting until the end to spell it out front to back. I believe this is more the style of the genre.