Dying For Attention
by James T. Shannon
Review by Mel Jacob
Five Star Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781432827519
Date: 19 February 2014 List Price $25.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
When Chug O'Malley, a former TV anchor and reporter, takes on a year's teaching assignment to develop the background for a book about high school students, little does he guess he'll be involved in solving the murders of several students and a school officer. At first, the initial death appears to be a suicide except for the note O'Malley received from the killer. Before long, his own life and career are threatened.
His students present a number of problems. One clique, led by a rich boy, pull several stunts to disrupt class, and Chug suspects one of the clique shoots at him one night at his cabin home. Chug eventually discovers the teacher whose classes he has taken over also received similar notes, but no murders occurred at that time.
In many ways, the portrait of the high school's students isn't pleasant. Teenage rebellion is rife and dysfunctional personalities predominate. Language may also offend some readers, but mirrors today's popular culture.
Shannon provides enough clues for the reader, but not all readers will resolve the murderer's identity. Shannon has written a number of mystery stories and won the Al Blanchard Award for one short mystery. Dying For Attention is his first novel.