Eat Crow and Die (P.J. Benson Mystery)
by Maris Soule
Review by Mel Jacob
Five Star Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781432830762
Date: 05 August 2015 List Price $25.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK
In the second P.J. Benson mystery, Eat Crow and Die, P.J., an accountant must save her love, Deputy Wade Kingsley, from arrest for the murder of his ex-wife and her husband. P.J. investigation is complicated by the onset of pregnancy.
Wade took his son, ex-wife, and her husband on a fishing trip that soon turned into a major disaster with his ex-wife and her husband dead when an explosion occurs. Because the ex-wife planned to take Wade's six-year-old son Jason to live in California and Wade opposed it the police suspect him of planting the bomb that killed his ex. Unfortunately, Wade has a concussion and memory loss from the event. He and Jason only survived because they were at the bow when the bomb exploded and were blown into the water.
P.J. is convinced of Wade's innocence and determined to prove it. She also discovers she is pregnant and is disappointed at Wade's response to it. Meanwhile, she observes people she encounter in the aftermath of the deaths and remembers what she sees and hears.
Apparently, Michael Brewster, the husband, had many enemies. A heavy gambler, he owed a lot of money to bookies and others. Neither Linda, the ex-wife, or Mike were popular with their neighbors. Someone called and left a message on Mike’s answering machine demanding he return something he had stolen.
A man in a black sedan and dressed like a hood keep showing up near the Brewster home. When P J. encounters him there, he asks about Brewster. She also recognizes his voice on a recorded message on Brewster’s answering machine demanding money.
An easy read for cozy devotees, the exciting climax with P.J. in danger will satisfy most readers. The hints to the killers are subtle enough, that all but the most astute will miss them. The motive for murder only becomes clear at that time.
Soule is an accomplished author with a number of books to her credit, including both mysteries and romances. For those who like conspiracies and assassins, read her new book, A Killer Past from Robert Hall.