William G. Tapply
Minotaur, Sep 29 2009, $24.99
Several years have gone by since Stoney Calhoun awakened in a Virginia VA hospital with total amnesia. He opened up a Portland, Maine bait shop owner with Kate Balaban and is a fishing guide and does occasional work for the cops and for “the Man in the Suit” who shows up periodically with an assignment that Stoney has the skills to accomplice. Although his memory remains erased from before the awakening Stoney still has the skills with weapons for instance before he went comatose.
The Suit offers Stoney a deal he cannot refuse. Instead of the usual tidbits about the past, he says he will insure they keep the bait shop potentially being sold to another buyer and keep Kate’s loved one covered by health insurance being challenged. Not even knowing the case Stoney agrees to the terms because he would do anything for Kate.
The Suit arranges for a Mr. Brecia to meet with Stoney. Mr. Brecia directs Stoney to investigate the deaths of operative McNulty and the underage teen townie Millie Gautier in what looked like a murder-suicide at St. Cecilia on the Canadian border. Mr. Brecia wants Stoney to find out what their agent was doing there with a sixteen year old. He suggests going undercover at the nearby exclusive Loon Lake Lodge as that is the only place in the vicinity of any known significance.
The third Stonewall Jackson Calhoun tale (see BITCH CREEK and GRAY GHOST) is a super whodunit with obvious overtones to Ludlam’s Bourne, but with the late William Tapply’s distinct New England take. The story line is fast-paced starting with the Suit showing what he can do to insure Stoney cooperates and never slows down. Fans will enjoy the hero’s activity in northern Maine as his in dubiously presence increases the homicide count considerably. DARK TIGER pay homage to Mr. Tapply who died in late July.