Speaking of Murder

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Speaking of Murder

Speaking of Murder is a unique mystery that slowly draws you into a web of an unbelievable chain of events.

Hank Fowler is at a sort of crossroads in his life. He's content, yet discontented. He is doing a job that pays the bills, working freelance mostly for a travel publication, and he works as a professor teaching a writing course. He is divorced and in a new relationship, one he should be happy with, but seems to spend a lot of time convincing himself of that. When an old friend calls him out of the blue, Hank is in too much of a rush to speak to him. When he discovers his friend has been found dead of a drug overdose, Hank's investigative reporter instincts tells him something just doesn't add up. In search of clues he has a chance encounter with one of his students, a woman named Rachel, and the two wind up working the case together.

This one got off to slow start, as the author took time to explain about Hank's current situation and how he came to this point in his life, but once the ball got rolling, I was really into the story.

Motivational speakers and their seminars are being targeted by a serial killer. But, what could possibly be the motive? I will try to be very careful here, but I have to say, I believe the whole “business” of motivational speakers to be exactly the way the author describes them. For me, this added a touch of dark humor and satire to the story. Hank was hard to figure out sometimes and still never really seemed to know his mind even toward the end of the book. Rachel on the other hand was a firecracker and I loved her character. These two made a good team, and it's possible they may team up again someday.

I wound up reading this book in one sitting. I enjoyed the originality of the story and it ended up being a pretty solid mystery novel.

Book Blurb for Speaking of Murder

After a divorce and an early retirement from newspaper reporting, Hank Fowler’s life is back on track—he has a girlfriend, steady freelance work, a teaching job—that is, until he gets a call from his old pal Chris Beckwith. Beckwith, his college roommate and a former drug-addict turned motivational speaker, is found dead not too long after. Following up on Chris’s sudden death, Hank begins to unravel a series of gruesome murders, all involving motivational speakers.

Meanwhile, Rachel, newly divorced and trying to write a book, enrolls in Hank’s writing class. With her help, Hank must track down the killer before the killer tracks him. In this suspenseful and tightly woven narrative, Jonathan Black creates a fast-paced murder mystery for the digital age. An homage to Chicago, Speaking of Murder is a noir whodunnit and a gripping read for lovers of the mystery genre.

Night Owl Reviews Dec, 2014 4.00