Thursday, October 7, 2010

What They're Saying about A Sporting Murder

Here are a couple of reviews about the fifth book in my Greg McKenzie mystery series:

In the week before Christmas rumors have surfaced that something is amiss with a proposed deal to bring a National Basketball Association franchise to Nashville. Local P. I. Greg McKenzie, with his wife and partner, Jill, are hired to investigate by a group of hockey fans opposed to the NBA’s coming, fearing loss of the hockey team’s fan base. An informant promises information on the deal that will “blow your mind,” but turns up shot in the face instead. Is his murder the result of being in the wrong part of town or connected to the case? Greg and Jill determine to find out.

But this will be no ordinary Christmas week. Besides the murder and Greg’s finding the body, an old case rears it head in the person of a former Air Force lieutenant whom Greg had helped convict of drug-dealing back in his days as an OSI investigator. He’s out of prison, and still carrying a grudge. As the book moves along at a fast pace, the McKenzies are hard-pressed to unravel the events and dangers into which they are thrust. Are they connected to the NBA deal or to Greg’s old enemy? We are kept guessing until the disparate threads all come together on Christmas Day in a rousing and satisfying climax.

Readers of Mr. Campbell’s previous books will be pleased to be back in his Nashville with Greg and Jill McKenzie. His writing is clean and spare, giving us enough sense of place and character to feel as if we’ve settled in with friends, and then in turn ratcheting up the tension and suspense. Greg McKenzie is not a hard-boiled private investigator, but he’s tough and smart, well aware of the qualities Jill brings to the partnership. The way the case plays out against the backdrop of their lives gives them a genuineness that makes the reader feel these would be good folks to spend an afternoon with - or to have along in a gun fight. Once again, Campbell has hit the mark.

Copyright ©2010 Larry W. Chavis in The GenReview

Christmas, the NBA, Hockey, a mysterious informant and add murder. Mix well, with a cunning P.I. and his not so shrinking Violet of a partner wife and you have a not so cozy mystery. The past comes calling to bake the mix into a read to tingle the toes of all the fans Chester D. Campbell. New readers may find the landscape a bit bare so reading the previous books is suggested. A Sporting Murder kept this reviewer focused right to the spine jarring end. Read at your own peril. You might find it hard to get anything else done.

David Brown, Military Writers Society of America Reviewer