Thursday, August 9, 2012
"Strangers in the night. What were the chances." Lyrics
Do we have any idea of what can happen to a body of a loved one once it arrives at a crematorium?
In this multi layered story, the action is centered around Atlanta and in a little town named Big Knob, near the North Carolina line.
Keye Street is a Chinese American P.I. who has her PhD and is a recovering alcoholic. Her boyfriend, Det. Aaron Rauser is a homicide detective in Atlanta and as the story begins, he tells Keye of finding the body of a young boy who was murdered.
A side story is about an attorney in Atlanta hiring Keye about looking into a case where a person had their mother cremated but when the urn dropped by accident, there was something other than human ashes in the urn.
Keye and her assistant, Neil travel to a rural community that feels as though it was left back in time to a deep south area. When they speak to the person about his mother's ashes, the person explains that after dropping the ashes and seeing what looked like something else, he had the ashes and it turned out to be chicken feed. The man wants to know what happened to his mother and complains that she didn't even like chickens.
Meanwhile, Keye's cousin, Miki, has been threatened back in Atlanta and another person is killed with evidence that points to the same killer as the young boy. This time it is a senior citizen and his body is found in Miki's basement.
The author writes with a keen wit that enhances the story and we feel as though we are reading a literary work. As we read of murders and missing bodies, it is the addition of the author's humor that makes the book different and a better read. As when she wants to ask another man about the person he just had cremated. His response..."My mother in law was as mean as a water moccasin."
There is excellent suspense in the story as the killer continues killing and with each kill, seems one step closer and closer to Miki.
I was also impressed with the manner in which Keye and her boyfriend related to each other. Unlike many female P.I.s with male law enforcement boyfriends, here, Aaron treats Keye in an equal manner in searching the crime scene or attempting to arrive at a motive for seemingly inconceivable crimes.
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