Friday, December 28, 2007

Of All Sad Words-Bill Crider

Of All Sad Words
Bill Crider
Dunne, Feb 2008, $23.95
ISBN 9780312348106

When C.P. Benton moved to Clearview, Texas he never expected his neighbors to run meth lab. Irate he informs Sheriff Dan Rhodes that his neighbors the Crawford brothers are cooking meth in their home. Besides doubting the accusation, Rhodes is busy with a homicide investigation, but promises Benton he will act on his complaint as soon as possible.

Rhodes cannot put it off any longer when the Crawford trailer explodes, killing of the siblings. The sheriff investigates only to find the brothers were cooking bathtub hooch not meth in the trailer. The surviving Crawford blames his late brother, but Rhodes arrests him anyway. However, when a second illegal still surfaces, Rhodes wonders what is going on that has turned Clearview into the crime capital of the Lone Star State.

The latest Sheriff Dan Rhodes police procedural is a superb small town amusing mystery. The fun in the tale is with the eccentric townsfolk whose antics keep Dan hopping as he mumbles humorous asides to the crime wave that is devastating Clearview. Bill Crider captures the essence of a tiny Texas town using irony and humor dryer than a martini to the delight of readers.

Harriet Klausner