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Stonewall Jackson's Elbow: An Owen Allison Mystery (Five Star First Edition Mystery) Hardcover – September, 2006

5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Risk analyst and part-time crime solver Owen Allison makes his fifth appearance (his first in three years) in this story of greed, fraud, and (why not?) romance. When a banker dies, government investigators discover a funds shortfall to the tune of a quarter of a billion dollars. The FDIC tries to recoup some of the loss by auctioning off the bank's assets, which include a Museum of Fakes and Frauds, but when the museum's beautiful curator vanishes, and strange things start happening to auction bidders, Owen figures it's time to step in and find out who's responsible. Oh, and what the heck, to see if he can't find the missing multimillions, too. The Allison novels combine good storytelling with a complex hero, a man with multiple intriguing character facets. A welcome return for a series that fans might have begun to expect had ended prematurely. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Details

  • Series: Five Star First Edition Mystery
  • Hardcover: 375 pages
  • Publisher: Five Star (ME); First Edition edition (September 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594144621
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594144622
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #781,983 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
The Feds are embarrassed when they audit the books of the First national Bank of Contrary, West Virginia as $750,000 is missing. They would like to go after bank President J. Burton Caldwell, a favorite of Wall St. but he died recently, which is the only reason federal bank examiners got to look at the books. The Federal Deposit Insurance Company knows they must pay back investors so they decide to auction the bank's only assets, the items in Caldwell's Museum of Fakes and Frauds.

At the auction, all sorts of fakes go to the highest bidder, but only one item brings in any money, a woman who buys several items. Not long afterward, that same lady dies in a car crash at nearby Devil's Hairpin. Soon afterward the museum curator Victoria Gallagher vanishes. Raleigh County Sheriff Thad Reader asks divorced failure analyst Owen Allison to look at the car accident scene; Owen concludes a homicide occurred. Soon he and other winning bidders are under attack by an unknown assailant for an unknown reason as all he bought was a cheap box of baseball cards for sixteen years old orphan Jeb Stuart Hobbes.

As with the four previous appearances Owen is a terrific lead character, the support cast is solid and realistically portrayed, especially the locals, and the mystery subplots tie together quite nicely in this fine police procedural investigation. However, the novel is owned by the fascinating Museum of Fakes and Frauds with each chapter opening with a fun paragraph on a particular hoax. John Billheimer entertains mystery fans with this lighthearted salute to Pt Barnum.

Harriet Klausner
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
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