Sunday, September 4, 2011

Time of Death-Gary Madden

Time of Death
Gary Madden
Five Star, Oct 12 2011, $25.95
ISBN: 9781432825133

In 1952 in the Pittsburgh area, the ghost of murder victim Virginia Beal visits Melody Rush pleading for justice. The newspapers made it clear the street hooker got what she deserved and the police allow the case to go cold without much of an inquiry. Only Melody investigates the homicide, but when Virginia’s pimp Fleck shoots her she falls into the nearby river and drowns.

The Grim Reaper and Melody discuss the metaphysics of death as he introduces the big mouth female to dead Theodore Amos whose soul is trapped for eternity inside his body since something stole the source of his power, his mask. He hires Melody to find and return his mask in exchange for his delaying the pick up of her soul. Beside her mom outraged that she was shot rather than finding a husband and that every ghost in the Tri-rivers area wants to chat with her, Mel feels pretty good especially since her physician for her wound is a hunk. However, time is running out on her client’s stolen artifact.

Time of Death is a fun paranormal historical noir that stars a sassy female who is a fish out of water in the early 1950s and even in the afterlife holding station. Her sarcastic discussion with the grim reaper is the best perhaps since Bill and Ted plated Battleship. Readers enjoy this entertaining investigative thriller as Mel and her sidekick Voe the cat work the mean streets of1952 Pittsburgh.

Harriet Klausner

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