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Dead Insider (A Loon Lake Mystery) Paperback – June 18, 2013

4.3 out of 5 stars 111 customer reviews
Book 13 of 14 in the Loon Lake Mystery Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

During an August flood, pieces of Wisconsin candidate for U.S. Senate Jane Ericsson’s dismembered body are found wrapped in butcher paper traveling down a swollen waterway near Loon Lake, Wisconsin. With the assistance of her close friend, retired dentist Dr. Paul (Doc) Osborne, Loon Lake Police Chief Lewellyn (Lew) Ferris investigates as a media circus descends around them. Suspects include an environmentalist who was trying to bribe Ericsson and a longtime friend with whom Ericsson had a recent falling out. Soon another dead victim is found. With Ericsson’s campaign manager acting oddly and a large amount of money missing from the deceased’s campaign fund, Ferris and Osborne have numerous avenues to pursue before they identify the killer. Framed by the developing romantic relationship between Doc and Lew, the story is populated with sympathetic, well-drawn main and secondary characters who epitomize the importance of friendship and neighborliness. Houston also delivers beautiful descriptions of the bucolic setting, along with plenty of sharply rendered fly-fishing scenes. --Sue OBrien --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

"By the end of Houston's...enjoyable 13th mystery set in Loon Lake, Wis., ...practically everyone in the small fishing town seems to have pitched in on a murder investigation. Lew makes for a satisfyingly quick-witted sleuth." - Publishers Weekly

"Framed by the developing romantic relationship between Doc and Lew, the story is populated with sympathetic, well-drawn main and secondary characters who epitomize the importance of friendship and neighborliness. Houston also delivers beautiful descriptions of the bucolic setting, along with plenty of sharply rendered fly-fishing scenes." - Booklist

"Author Victoria Houston has a flair for demonstrating the scenic background, the locals, and of fleshing out her protagonists and secondary characters. Additionally, the mystery itself is tautly plotted, and contains certain twists and denouements which will intrigue and gratify readers who 'love a good mystery.'" - GMA Literary Community blog

"I have never before encountered so many accurately portrayed, professional protocols in one book.... Also, Houston's nuances are admirable.... This is superb reading - but you really need to go there, or at least read more in the series with an intriguing ensemble cast inspired by people the author remembers from her childhood." - Bookpleasures.com

"There is so much to like about Victoria Houston's new novel, Dead Insider, I almost don't know where to begin. Those who usually don't like cozies...should stop immediately and read the first 10 pages.... That's all it will take. Like a fish on the line, they will be hooked." - Killer Nashville Book of the Day

"I found the plot to be well written and had a realistic vibe. The book had the perfectly believable small community feel. The plot flowed well and there were no lags. I am hooked on this series after reading my first book and will certainly be reading more of Ms. Houston's books." – Sally's Creative Corner

"It takes a lot of effort and ability to make all the characters so real and relatable. Filled with politics, country traditions, and good old fashion mystery, this novel will sweep readers up in its lies and deceits until the truth is laid bare." – Book Vacations blog

"The main characters are back plus some new ones to enjoy. The Mystery keeps you guessing almost all the way through the book. It is a clean read. Some beautiful scenery that makes you want to go fishing." - Readalot blog

"Houston nails the small rural town: its labyrinthine connections between long-time residents; their camaraderie; and the fundamental decency of [most] of its citizens and their ability to deal with even the most shocking crimes in this engaging series." --Alfred Hitchock's Mystery Magazine

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Product Details

  • Series: A Loon Lake Mystery
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Tyrus Books (June 18, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1440533563
  • ISBN-13: 978-1440533563
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #249,251 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
After a devastating rainstorm floods the rivers of Loon Lake, Wisconsin, a slacker of a police officer hopes that the butcher-paper wrapped packages floating down the Tomorrow River are prime venison meat someone had stored in their flooded basements. What he discovers instead is the horrific sight of human body parts and the head of Jane Theresa Ericcson, an up and coming candidate for Senate with a history of alcoholism.

Retired dentist Dr. Paul Osborne was hoping for a quiet summer to spend with his visiting daughter Mallory and her new boyfriend but the homicide once again has Loon Lake Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris calling in Paul as acting coroner and dental forensics expert. Paul's best friend Ray Pradt, the six-foot-six man-of-all-(legal and illegal)-trades also helps out with his tracking skills and knowledge of Loon Lake. That Paul is dating Lew only makes things all the more entertaining in this very nepotistic and isolated northern Wisconsin town.

The heir to the enormously wealthy lumber baron family and daughter of a Senator herself, Jane was known for making enemies. Only weeks earlier she had fired her childhood friend Kaye Lund as the estate caretaker in an argument that culminated in threats to expose secrets long kept hidden. Even Jane's ambitious campaign manager seems more than willing to step in to take over while Mallory's boyfriend Kenton Harriman has his own public relations ambitions.

The joy in reading the Loon Lake Mysteries comes from getting reacquainted with the Loon Lake residents and the ever-entertaining exchanges between Paul, Lew, and Ray.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have the entire series and will buy any new ones as they come out. While for me I could have given this 5 stars I gave it four as I just love, have fond memories and vacation in northern Wisconsin every year so personally I can picture every story very well in my mind as if it was illustrated. Other than that you will find the series an easy quick read with main characters you will like and feel close too. While each book can be read on it's own, be advised that you do see the character relationships develop over time. She does however give background in each book so that you won't be lost even if you haven't read the previous books in the series. While Loon Lake is a fictional town, many real times are mentioned and if you know the North woods, you will easily picture Loon Lake in your mind.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I absolutely love the Loon Lake series by Victoria Houston and this 13th installment in this long-running series was no exception.

The premise is usually interesting. In this one, the campaign of a candidate for U.S. senator is rocked when, after a heavy rain, human body parts turned up wrapped in packages the resemble how venison is wrapped. While that sounds gory, the book certainly is not at all gruesome.

I really love the Wisconsin Northwoods setting and the recurring cast of characters, too. Doc, Lew the Chief of Police, Ray Pradt, and all the others have become a group I love returning to visit with, every year, in these Loon Lake books.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is another series I look forward to each time a new book comes out. Victoria Houston knows the area up north in Wisconsin. I enjoy the cast of characters and their friendships. Great series. Highly entertaining.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book. Victoria Houston does a good job at developing the story and characters. Being from Wisconsin, I could easily picture the area up north she wrote about. A pleasure to read a story like this. I hope to read more of her books.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book presents another outstanding entry in an outstanding series. I love the every day feel of the novels as we spend time with the main characters even before they begin investigating the current murder. The relationship between Lew and Doc is beautiful.

A wealthy senatorial candidate from Loon Lake is murdered and unusual circumstances lead to the discovery of the murder.

Doc's daughter Mallory and an unlovable guest are in town for a visit, and he keeps trying to push his unwelcome presents into the investigation.

A friend of Ray and Doc is a natural suspect but both men refuse to believe that this person could intentionally hurt another human being.

Time, intelligence and luck bring together the answers to this horrendous murder.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is a good excuse to hang out with some likable, uncomplicated characters and to learn about life in rural Wisconsin. But it's not much of a mystery.

The murder isn't discovered unit almost halfway through the book, and then the identity of the killer is almost instantaneously obvious. Tip: If Doc Osborne likes or feels sympathy for a character, that isn't the killer. There were no surprises.

Also, if you're not into fly fishing--as one character says, I couldn't tell a walleye from a wallaroo--some parts of the book are eminently skippable. All in all, I found it a waste of my time, and of even the $1.99 I paid for it.
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