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Where I Can See You Paperback – January 10, 2017
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"Where I Can See You is a first-rate small-town mystery full of crackling suspense and enough surprises to make the reader’s head spin. But the book’s protagonist, Hud Matthews, is the real star here. A tough, smart, sensitive man haunted by his past and furiously compelled to keep looking for answers no matter how painful they may be. Don’t miss a single tension-filled word of this one!”
—David Bell, bestselling author of Since She Went Away
“A disgraced big-city police detective’s search for his mother and the return to the familiarity of his old hometown provide a solid framework for noir mystery. Juxtaposed against a series of seemingly senseless murders, the story unfolds with escalating tension. Readers are in the hands of a writer who knows how to tell a riveting story through the development of sympathetic characters—without the easy reliance on graphic violence.”
—Anne Hillerman, New York Times-bestselling author of Rock with Wings
“No one weaves a mystery quite like Larry D. Sweazy, and never has his one-of-a-kind knack for twists and thrills been on better display than in Where I Can See You. Hud Matthews is a hard-hewn, mold-breaking detective hell-bent on unearthing the secrets of not only his boyhood home—a small town with a skeleton in every closet, a ghost around every corner—but of his own past. And by any means necessary. Written with rich and vivid prose, Where I Can See You is a story that sinks its teeth into you and doesn’t let up until the last page is turned.”
—Adam James Jones, award-winning author of The Vendetta of Felipe Espinosa
“Sweazy is the rarest of writers. He aims for the jugular and hits it every time. Few do it as well. None do it better.”
—Brandt Dodson, author of The Sons of Jude
“A master of narrative description, Sweazy paints from a cold palette. Hauntingly poignant, Where I Can See You rips the scabs off old wounds and long-buried secrets, revealing a tragic hero on a quest to unearth the truth of what happened to his beloved mother. Hud Matthews is a tough-as-nails, introspective cop who can take an oar upside the head and come back swinging. Rich and compelling, Where I Can See You is a moody tale of longing and loss, a quest through the haunted past to the violent present.”
—James W. Ziskin, author of the Anthony, Barry, and Lefty Award-nominated Ellie Stone Mysteries
“Sweazy has skillfully woven three strands together in this taut and moody mystery: Who killed a young woman and left her body at the edge of Demmie Lake? What happened to Detective Hud Matthews in Detroit that led him to return to the Lakes and join their underfunded force? And why did his mother up and vanish when he was an eight-year-old boy? Sweazy sets this yarn in a vividly evoked lakeside town, a long-time vacation destination now crumbling into nostalgia, poverty, and drugs. I could smell the mud by the lake and the mold inside the cabins. The town is crumbling, but the old secrets, yearnings, and alliances are as strong as ever. Hud was once an insider, but years away have left him uncertain of what remains of the town he knew. He juggles old loyalties, new acquaintances, and his own agenda in this fine mystery.”
—Ann Littlewood, author, the Iris Oakley mystery series
About the Author
Larry D. Sweazy is the author of See Also Deception, See Also Murder, A Thousand Falling Crows, Escape from Hangtown, Vengeance at Sundown, The Gila Wars, The Coyote Tracker, The Devil's Bones, The Cougar's Prey, The Badger's Revenge, The Scorpion Trail, and The Rattlesnake Season. He won the WWA Spur award for Best Short Fiction in 2005 and for Best Paperback Original in 2013, and the 2011 and 2012 Will Rogers Medallion Award for Western Fiction for the Josiah Wolfe series. He was nominated for a Derringer award in 2007, and was a finalist in the Best Books of Indiana literary competition in 2010, and won in 2011 for The Scorpion Trail. He has published over sixty nonfiction articles and short stories, which have appeared in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine; The Adventure of the Missing Detective: And 25 of the Year's Finest Crime and Mystery Stories!; Boys' Life; Hardboiled; Amazon Shorts, and several other publications and anthologies. He is member of ITW (International Thriller Writers), WWA (Western Writers of America), and WF (Western Fictioneers).
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Top Customer Reviews
The lakeside community has gone seedy in his absence, his boss (a boyhood friend) has a sour disposition, other cops on the force are resentful of his skills and Hud is haunted by the unresolved disappearance of his mother when he was a child.
Before he has time to deal with these issues, a young woman is murdered on the shores of the lake, quickly followed by more murders with questionable similarity in motive. Then a married woman he idealized as a boy thrusts herself into his arms.
Talk about conflict.
Hud has a bunch to deal with and things get even more complicated as he irritates friend and foe by bringing up questions about his mother's cold case. These questions and his musing on the past are spread through the narrative and may be confusing at first. But, don't worry, Sweazy unravels it in a stunning conclusion.
Sweazy's poetic and descriptive prose delivers a sure sense of place. Coupled with skilled plotting, well-drawn characters and plenty of suspense, it makes for a compelling read.
Detective Hud Mathews’ first case begins three days after he is hired and it is a difficult one. A young woman, shot in the back of the head, is found dead on the shoreline of the local lake. She may have been executed there or dumped after being killed elsewhere. Corner Bill Flowers, who has been around for decades, isn’t sure as he doesn’t see any obvious powder burns at the impact point. The autopsy should tell him more.
According to a local resident who comes forward to talk to the investigators at the crime scene, the deceased woman was a mom to an eight-year-old boy. The boy is missing and the witness is very concerned for obvious reasons. Detective Mathews and Deputy Moran go to the trailer where the family was staying and do not find him there. Detective Hud Mathews has some ideas where the boy is as he grew up in the area and roamed far and wide to avoid stress at home. There is a boy to be found and that comes before the current murder or the case he has never been able to solve--- the disappearance of his mother.
Where I Can See You is a first rate mystery full of complicated characters, dark secrets, and deep emotion. The author has created a diverse cast of complicated and very real characters that are each doing their best to survive their pasts while functioning in the present. As the pages pass, readers are drawn into a dark and complicated cast of folks that are hiding much and yet slowly giving away everything they hold dear.
This is one of those books that is extremely difficult to review without giving away too much. Where I Can See You is one of those books that really must be read and will surprise you throughout. It works from both a reader standpoint as well as a writer standpoint as there is a very nice storytelling technique used throughout the book that works exceptionally well. Intense and compelling, Where I Can See You is highly recommended.
Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano Public Library System.
Kevin R. Tipple ©2017
Hud Matthews was being raised by his mother and grandmother, when his mother disappeared. The pair never stopped looking for her during the rest of his childhood. Fast forward to the present day, Hud’s grandmother Gee has now passed and after an incident in Detroit – the violent death of one of Hud’s informants at his hands - Hud has left the big city and returned back to his hometown community.
First day on the new job and a body has turned up lakeside, a young woman has been shot. Hud on the local police force, under the watchful eye of Paul Burke, the local police chief and a childhood friend of our main man, is involved from the outset.
Hud is viewed with mistrust and resentment from other members of the small team, as well as encountering difficulties from locals, who remember him as a boy and had a relationship with his mother. One thing you know in a mystery of this type if you tell someone to leave something alone, they’re going to do the exact opposite. Cue more digging.
Small town mystery, an escalating present day series of crimes and the obsession of one man and his past which he can’t escape. The presence of his absent mother looms large on every page.
Great setting, interesting characters, and a riveting mystery – are the present day crimes linked to the past, who can be trusted, who has something to hide? Sweazy is fast turning into one of my favourite authors.
Lots to like here.
4.5 from 5
I’ve previously read two books from this author from his Marjorie Trumaine series – See Also Murder and See Also Deception. Another standalone – A Thousand Falling Crows still awaits.
Read in February, 2017
Published – 2017
Page count – 254
Source – review copy from Seventh Street Books (cheers to Jake)
Format – ARC paperback
Most Recent Customer Reviews
There are plenty of twists and turns to keep things interesting once the story starts to heat up.Read more