Review of The Sand Bluff Murders
by C. M. Albrecht
Here’s a neat review from Café Reads, Where books and beans are celebrated,
Summary: “Newly hired officer Jonas McCleary is into his third day on the job in the tiny town of Sand Bluff —and Sand Bluff has its first murder in twenty years. Before Jonas can begin to get his feet wet, local hottie Twyla Peters is found murdered…Now, faced with two seemingly unconnected murders, McCleary is really put to the test. But the worst isn’t over.”
Provided by author
Published: Cambridge Books, 2012 (soon to be published)
Where I got it: sent to me in PDF form
More information: http://www.writewordsinc.com/
With a touch of humor and romance, The Sand Bluff Murders throws a likeable lead into a chaotic and intriguing mystery plot. As the mystery unravels, the first-person narration forges an important bond between reader and lead character, whose wit and sarcasm endear him to the reader. The writing is polished and practical. What really grabbed me was the dialogue, which captures the essence of a conversation without insulting the readers’ intelligence. Albrecht shows his skill and precision as an author when he summarizes the protagonist’s back story later in the book, rather than pummeling the reader upfront with a lengthy biography. I was also impressed with Albrecht’s pacing and chapter breaks. Albrecht clearly understands the mystery genre and has assembled his suspects, alibis and intrigues accordingly.
On the flip-side, I would have liked to see the book open in media res. Also, as a matter of personal taste, I thought some emotional stakes for the lead would have given the reader a more holistic view of his character. At times, the lead’s sarcasm makes him sound immature and less believable as a law enforcement officer, much less a detective. Some of the suspects are also underdeveloped as characters, but this is not a capital offense in mystery novels, since they are typically plot-driven.
Overall, I highly recommend this book. Albrecht has the potential to become a successful mystery writer, and The Sand Bluff Murders–with its witty narration, charming protagonist and solid mystery plot–is definitely worth the read.
Author’s Note: Clinically proven to be more effective than the other leading novels.