Suwon Martial Arts Performance Suwon South Korea Ye do style or short sword style., originally uploaded by Derekwin.
Lexy Hyatt, that indefatigable, staunchly independent reporter and amateur sleuth, returns in her third mystery. With the support of her loving partner, martial arts lessons that conspire to illustrate her lack of coordination and grace, and her own highly-tuned sense of intrigue and drama, Lexy is drawn into solving the murder of a particularly nasty piece of work named Andrew Standish, the twin brother of the woman who owns The Ledger, the family-run newspaper Lexy works for. The bitter legacy left by Andrew indicates to the sharp-eyed Lexy that many would have wished him dead--especially his sister, Andrea Standish, who stood to profit most by gaining exclusive control of the paper.
However, so many suspects--and red herrings--litter the pages that Lexy has plenty of possibilities to mull over. What is the murder's connection to the Light of Christ Church (LCC), a radically fundamentalist organization that may be setting off vicious attacks that hit a little too close to home? Or Thea Gantt, the outrageously sexy and confident would be rival for the attentions of Lexy's partner, who may have a grim history with Andrew Standish? Is there a deeper, perhaps deadly association between the LCC and Cross Communications, run by the slick Chris Cross and his malicious wife, Nelda? And what about Lexy's boss, Andrea Standish--is she to be trusted or is she using Lexy to cover up her own insidious plans?
In fact, there is such a tangled web of lies and false leads that it's no wonder our heroine doesn't figure it out until the actual killer spills it all, four pages before the end. The quick reader, who may be somewhat skeptical that Lexy Hyatt, crack reporter, does not even strongly consider the actual killer a suspect, may realize whodunit before Lexy does. The fairy-tale quality of the ending takes away from the realism of the story, leaving it satisfying but not faithful to Lexy's mostly ethical character.
With several sizzling sex scenes to spice things up, a hearty dose of politically correct current events, and some intriguing minor characters, Reporter on the Run is a fun read just made for curling up by the fire on those cold winter nights.
Dishing up crime, passion, deception, suspicious characters and events, and a bold protagonist who fearlessly investigates at her own peril, Night Mare is a quiet romantic mystery. Jane Scott is a wealthy Quaker New Englander who is uncomfortable with the size of her bank account. Plagued with a history of relationships that seemed mostly to consist of gold diggers, we first meet Jane living with a particularly devious social climber. She finds consolation in her beloved horses, a bequest left by the parents who died when Jane was 17, and in her best friend Victoria, another horse fanatic.
Jane, a sometime freelance journalist, has recently written articles about a horse theft ring and a possible insurance scam operating in the big bucks world of horse shows. When Jane and Victoria go see a horse for sale, Jane gets curious when she notices some odd behavior by the horse's owners and asks too many questions. Several days later the horse turns up brutally murdered, its head bashed in, and the horrified yet determined Jane recklessly plunges into danger. When she comes home one evening to discover her own horses missing, Jane sets off to find them. A convoluted path leads her to a feisty mare she calls Night, the big sky of Montana, and Miles, a down-to-earth woman whose own lonely heart may hold some answers for Jane, if only Jane can take off the self-imposed blinkers long enough to notice.
The snags in this novel appear in the form of awkward writing, the omission of key scenes, and a narrator who is by turns clumsy and too naive to be entirely believable. Jane throws herself into situations so dubious even a grade-schooler would have paused to assess the potential damage to self. Her refusal to see vital clues is too forced. Jane's Quaker faith, which is perhaps the most tantalizing fact about her, is only lightly sketched for the uninformed reader, leaving mere tidbits of background that could have more solidly rounded out her character.
The refined landscape of Vermont and the wild backcountry of Montana add color and depth. And despite the equine interests of the characters, the non-horsy reader need not despair; the tale is still appealing. This engaging read is bound to provide a few hours of intrigue and adventure.
JULIE K. TRAVELYAN IS A WRITER AND EDITOR WHO MANAGED TO ESCAPE THE BIG CITY. SHE LIVES IN THE RED ROCK CANYON COUNTRY OF SOUTHERN UTAH.
Named Works: Reporter on the Run (Book) Book reviews; Night Mare (Book) Book reviews
Trevelyan, Julie K. "Getting a clue. (Fiction)." Lambda Book Report Nov.-Dec. 2001: 18+. General OneFile. Web. 27 Nov. 2010.
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