- File Size: 2061 KB
- Print Length: 255 pages
- Publication Date: July 24, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B008OY00QS
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,377,798 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Sportsman's Bet (Ian Dodge Mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition
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11 customer reviews
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Our main character is Ian Dodge and he is investigating the murder of Velma Saunders. Sooner or later you will run into this type of character. Someone who keeps her nose to herself and expects you to do the same. The kind of person who makes sure all the T(s) are crossed and the I(s) are dotted. Rules do not bend and she does not allow you to bend them. Everyone disliked her and everyone was afraid of her. And yet, someone killed her.
The thing that attracted me first to this story was that Ian is British. He's lived in the states twenty years, but he still has the British charm. The thing that kept me interested in this story is the writing style and the development of the characters, especially that of the deceased. The writer made me want to know who killed this woman. I couldn't put it down. I wanted to know her story and her secrets.
I admit my heart was pattering hard as I came to the climax of the story. I also got a bit teary-eyed at the conclusion. I can be a sentimental fool at times. I give kudos to the author Judy Nichols for answering ALL the questions that were set forth and giving full closure.
Honestly, I am a harsh critic and this book gets a high rating from me as it was perfect in every way. Not too wordy when it came to scene setting, but enough that you got the full picture and feel for where you were and who you were with and the story never dragged.
This small town mystery is engaging from the first page and doesn't let go until the end. Although the action kept up at a decent pace, I'd say that I felt like the way Ian Dodge was able to quickly zero in on the elaborate past that Velma had, and then was able to correctly guess and identify the murderer seemed a little too contrived. It just kind of happened within a couple of days, as opposed to a true police investigation which would probably have taken weeks, if not months, and might not have gotten solved. A seasoned mystery reader might have the same reservation about it that I had.
However, if you are able to give the author a little bit of leeway with these kinds of things, or if you're a casual mystery reader, then you will likely enjoy this book. It flows well, it's folksy, it's light and easy to get through. A perfect quick read if you're looking for something to enjoy in a weekend or over the course of a few evenings.
*An ebook was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
The slang provides a nice side-note to the presence of the main character, private investigator and narrator and storyteller Ian Dodge. Ian is a former police officer turned private investigator, twice divorced, with 3 children, a dog and a house he rents while he lives in a trailer in the yard. Ian presents with a wry sense of humor, slightly fastidious in his personal habits and an unerring habit of `putting on the accent' when being charmingly polite to the women he encounters.
As an unwitting and not exactly willing participant in the discovery of a murder victim in the town's decrepit bomb shelter, Ian is hired by the defense lawyer to find "anyone that could have done the crime" aside from the current suspect.
I admit - I am a fan of mysteries, and have read my share of them. In most of the mysteries I do read, I have not found more than a handful where I was unable to figure out "who did it". I was killer at Clue as a kid. This mystery had me stumped. There were far too many possible options, and the majority of the `evidence' that pointed to one person or another was over forty years old. Add to that a relatively small and insular area, where many people are related through blood or marriage, or even both - and you have a real `feel' for the area in which the story takes place.
The writing is incredibly tight and smooth, each chapter is relatively short and nearly all are dedicated to one little piece of the mystery to be solved. All of the characters that are introduced are done with just enough detail to be fitting to their importance to the entire plot. Recurrent characters (as I do believe this is going to be a series of mysteries) are given enough detail to want to know more; from quirks to relevance in the town or area - they all have some endearing quality that fits in both the story and the area. And once I discovered the "who" in the "whodunit" all of the hints to the murderer came clear. That, to me, is the true mastery of a mystery author - enough dissembling and partial reveals of evidence mixed with other superfluous bits to sift through. Done with a flair for smooth and cohesive writing, careful plot construction and a keen sense of humor in the main character make this a book easy to recommend.
Like mysteries? What about stories based in the south? Have a "thing" for a brit? Just want a new read with an author you aren't familiar with? This is the book.
I was contacted by the author and asked if I would be interested in reviewing this novel. I received a copy of this book for purpose of honest review, and I was not compensated for this review. All conclusions are honestly and freely given, and entirely my responsibility **