First the admissions: Robert S. Napier, better known to some of us as "Cap'n Bob," is a frequent commenter on this blog. Though we've met on relatively few occasions, I've known him for many more years than either of us would like to think about. And I feel as if I dragged him kicking and screaming into getting this book published.
That being said, if it had been a lousy book, I wouldn't have mentioned it here at all. Luckily for all of us, it's a fine debut mystery.
Jack Lorentz, the novel's narrator, deals in collectible toys, something about which the Cap'n knows more than a little, and I got a real kick from the opening scene when Lorentz is giving the business to a fraudulent toy seller, which reminded me of some eBay experiences. Lorentz has other talents, however. He's a former investigative reporter, and he has a concealed carry permit, making him a perfect candidate to become an amateur sleuth, which is what happens when an old flame begs Jack to look into the little matter of some inconvenient bodies that have turned up on her family's vacation property.
Smooth writing, a fine mystery, and entertaining characters (some with names that will be familiar to hardcore mystery fans). A dandy debut all around. Check it out. (Meanwhile I'll be trying to force the Cap'n to get the sequel ready for publication.)