Monday, January 21, 2008

Island Life-Michael W. Sherer

Island Life
Michael W. Sherer
Five Star, Mar 2008, $25.95
ISBN: 9781594146336

In a Seattle suburb, Jack Holm lost his position at J Marketing Communications and has not found salaried work since; instead he has opened a marketing consulting business out of his home. His wife Mary is unhappy with this arrangement as it means she will have to accept more flight attendant assignments to supplement their income.

Mary goes shopping but fails to return home. Jack assumes she got a call for a flight and had no time to tell him. Their two children fourteen years old Kelsey and ten years old Tyler are concerned and though he hides it so is he. After a few days pass, he calls the police. Detective Ed Mankiewicz believes Mary ran off with someone else or Jack killed her. As time passes, more people begin to accept that Jack is a spouse killer until even his kids begin to wonder. Only a soccer mom thinks he is innocent. When Mary’s shallow grave is found, Ed arrests him. Desperate to prove his innocence and keep his children with him, Jack investigates Mary’s last days in hopes of finding clues to uncover the identity of his wife’s killer.

Although Jack’s logic to wait a few days before calling the cops seems off kilter and contrived to add to the belief he is guilty, readers will relish this superb crime thriller. The story line is character driven as just about everyone has convicted Jack including the cops who are not looking elsewhere. Jack is an anti hero placed in a desperate situation who responds with courage he never knew he possessed especially as he begins to unravel the motive, which links him to a dangerous person willing to kill his kids to end Jack’s pursuit.

Harriet Klausner