In a fast-paced, suspenseful debut novel for fans of Harlan Coben and Lisa Gardner, detective Darla Cavannah goes Deep South in pursuit of a merciless killer.
Outside the local women’s health clinic, the Reverend Jimmy Aldridge waving his protest sign is a familiar sight. But that changes early one morning when someone shoots the beloved Reverend Jimmy dead. Sheriff Shelby Mitchell knows the preacher’s murder will shock the good people of Jackson—and the pressure to find the killer is immediate and intense, which is why Shelby calls in detective Darla Cavannah.
When police detective Darla moved from Philadelphia to Jackson with her husband—hometown football hero Hugh “the Glue” Cavannah—she never imagined the culture shock that awaited. Then after Hugh dies in a car crash, Darla enters a self-imposed exile in her Mississippi home, taking a leave of absence from the sheriff’s department. Now she’s called back to duty—or coerced, more like it, with Shelby slathering on his good-ole-boy charm nice and thick, like on a helping of barbecue.
Reluctantly partnered with a mulish Elvis impersonator, Darla keeps a cool head even as the community demands an arrest. The court of public opinion has already convicted the clinic’s doctor, Stephen Nicoletti, but Darla is just as sure he’s not guilty—even as she fights her growing attraction to him. From the genteel suburbs to a raunchy strip club, Darla follows a trail of dirty money and nasty secrets—until the day of judgment comes, and she faces down an ungodly assassin.
Review by Angela
I received an uncorrected proof in exchange for an honest review. I like mystery novels that make me think and have me guessing. This one wasn’t so mysterious. I was able to figure things out, like who the killer was and what was happening before it became apparent to the detectives. There wasn’t really any foreshadowing to blame it on either. It was just easy to guess. I also didn’t like how quickly the main character, Darla, fell into bed with one of the characters in the book. It was way too quick in my opinion. I haven’t read any of Gary Gusick’s other books. I may pick up one of his other ones to read and see if it is any better with the mystery. The story was decent and it was controversial so there was a lot of tension. But, sadly, the mystery was lacking. I give this 3.5 books.