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Dead Hot Shot (Loon Lake Fishing Mysteries) Paperback – July 1, 2008

4.5 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews
Book 9 of 14 in the Loon Lake Mystery Series

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Ninth in the Loon Lake Mysteries

Murder never takes a holiday... or so Loon Lake learns one wintry Thanksgiving Day. Chief of Police Lew Ferris, short-handed thanks to an AWOL coroner, never even gets the turkey stuffed before the bodies start to surface. By the end of the day, credit card theft and dysfunctional families have so muddied the waters that not even expert tracker and dedicated fishing guide, Ray Pradt, can hope to fish the final day of muskie season. And while retired dentist, Doc Osbornse, had counted on sitting by the fire with Lew (out of uniform) and planning a fly fishing trip to Wyoming--the unexpected arrival of Gina Palmer, former investigative reporter turned forensics database expert, ramps up the action with her pursuit of a Canadian link to the theft of merchandise from stores across the upper Midwest.

Dead Hot Shot, ninth in the Loon Lake Mystery series, is a heady mix of murder, mayhem and fishing in the northwoods of Wisconsin. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

In her teens and twenties, mystery author Victoria Houston was the classic hometown girl who couldn't wait to leave her small Wisconsin town. She has not only returned to her hometown, Rhinelander, but she has based her popular Loon Lake mystery series in the region's fishing culture. She has been featured in the "Wall Street Journal" and on National Public Radio.

Jennifer Van Dyck has starred on and off Broadway, in such films as The Contender and Bullets Over Broadway, and on television in Law & Order and Spin City. --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Loon Lake Fishing Mysteries
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Bleak House Books (July 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932557741
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932557749
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,617,418 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Patricia E. Reid on August 9, 2008
Format: Paperback
Thanksgiving is a holiday for family and friends, relaxing after dinner, and just all around good food and fun. Chief of Police Lew Ferris plans for a peaceful Thanksgiving with Doc Osborne, retired dentist and part time deputy. Doc plans for an early dinner with his family and then a later a leisurely dinner with Lew and hopefully dessert in front of the fire and thoughts of future plans.

First, the death of a local resident intervenes. Nolan Reece is found dead down by her dock early on Thanksgiving. This is just the first of many tragic incidents to happen on this holiday. Lew's coroner is out of town and she finds it necessary to call Doc in to work. Nolan's husband and daughter seem to have strange reactions to Nolan's death which raises questions in Lew and Doc's minds.

Soon another local person is found dead and there is no doubt this one is a murder. Ray Pradt is called in to help out and then Gina Palmer, former investigative reporter arrives in town. Gina is working on a case of credit card theft that may have links to Canada and she soon discovers links to Loon Lake as well.

Most of the characters from the previous Loon Lake Mystery series are on hand and the reader meets a few other residents of the area. The scenery is stunning and the mystery is one that kept this reader on edge. It is not necessary to have read the previous Loon Lake Mysteries to enjoy this one but I would highly recommend latching onto the whole series.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I started with Dead Angler and here I am with Dead Hot Shot. I am somewhat disappointed. I still love the wonderful "Loon Lake" descriptions but the series has become too predictable. New plot, some new characters, but same old story. Added to that , Ms Houston seems to be adding more "language", ie, cursing. I choose to read clean books, and have enjoyed this series up to now. A little hanky lanky is not so bad, but I imagine the author will soon expand that also. It' a shame, but this is my last "Loon Lake" mystery.
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Format: Paperback
It’s Thanksgiving Eve and Nolan Reece is giving an engagement party for her daughter, Blue. Pleased with the party, she takes her nightly stroll down to the dock. Since Nolan has managed to blackmail her only child, a child she has hated since before her birth, into becoming engaged to a man she does not love, she is actually feeling exceptionally pleased with herself.

And being more than a little inebriated, she cannot react quickly to the sounds in the brush that shouldn’t be there. A hard blow to the head, a fall into the lake, a solid object shoved over her to hold her down and it’s done.

Needless to say, when the body is found early Thanksgiving morning, a serious crimp is put into the festivities planned by Doc Osborne and his girlfriend, Loon Lake Chief of Police Lew Ferris. Despite the husband’s insistence that the death is an accident, Doc and Lew know the difference between a drunken stumble and an assault. Keeping the evidence they have discovered away from the family, Doc and Lew begin the first laborious steps of a murder investigation.

With no CSI team available in the boonies on a holiday, Doc and Lew do all they can, secure the scene and head home to a very belated Thanksgiving dinner with Ray Pradt and Gina Palmer. Before they can finish their turkey and pumpkin pie, they have another body. The foster mother of two Ojibwa teenagers has been gunned down in front of her bait shop/general store. And those two sisters were not only at Blue’s party the night before, they are also the beneficiaries of a charitable (read that as “financial”) endeavor by Nolan Reece.

Doc and Lew may not see the connection between the two murders yet, but the reader does.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've loved every book in this series! Houston crafts wonderful mysteries, complex and intriguing characters, and a plot line that keeps me up far later than I'd planned. But once I start one of her Loon Lake Mysteries, I can't stop until I've read the last page.
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I love these books; this one is my 5th. I love the characters, the settings, the suspense of the story and the wonderful descriptions of the northern woods and lakes. I with these people were real; I would go visit.
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Format: Paperback
Retired dentist Paul Osborne was hoping for a pleasant Thanksgiving holiday with his daughter and ladylove Police Chief Llewellyn "Lew" Ferris despite his irritating houseguests, neighbors who have overstayed their welcome by five weeks during their home renovation. Unfortunately, the drowned body of social royalty Nolan Reece washes ashore just after her daughter's engagement party and Lew finds that she also has her hands full investigating a rash of credit card fraud incidents that all seem to be tied to their small Wisconsin town. After deputizing Osborne and more reluctantly, unlikely ladies' man and fishing guide/entrepreneur/everything else Ray Pradt, the three begin investigating the secrets of the Reece family and focus on Nolan's husband's and daughter's lack of bereavement over her death. Doc as well attempts to help two young Indian girls who seem oppressively employed by their foster mother and owner of Mildred's Food Shop, and when violence occurs it's not surprising that in this small town events will intertwine and lead towards a tragic conclusion.
Once again Houston returns to the comfortable and always engaging Loon Lake setting, where the characters continue to be as enjoyable and entertaining as they are familiar. Readers will revel in the advancement of the relationship between Osborne and Lew, as well as the hilariously awkward and definitely unwanted advancements by Osborne's married houseguest. Osborne has finally moved past most of his resentment towards his overbearing late wife, and he and daughters are learning to develop healthy relationships with one another. This is a fast, breezy, and satisfying read in a continually enjoyable series. As always, Houston writes with charm and humor, and her reliable cast of characters is a joy to observe.
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