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Book Review: Death Line by Geraldine Evans

Despite being a man known for his ability to read the future, Jasper Moon was totally unprepared for his own death. Killed with a blunt instrument, his own crystal ball, his death brings up more questions than answers. For Inspector Rafferty and Sergeant Llewellyn nothing about the case is what it seems.

As they begin their investigation looking for answers, they find possible suspects at every turn. There is the erstwhile partner, never fully appreciated, Edwin Astell. There is his lovely yet fragile wife, Sarah, who did not like Moon in the very least. Then there is Virginia Campbell, one of the staff members, who also has offices on the premises. Mrs. Mercedes Moreno and Ellen Hadleigh round out the cast of characters with possible motive.

When Rafferty finds that money is missing, the pool of suspects increases. As Rafferty and Llewellyn discover that Moon is not their victim’s real name, they find themselves looking outside the internal cast to those that may have other issues with Jasper Moon. Just who is Jasper Moon?

In Death Line by Geraldine Evans, we find an unusual cast of characters, unique and just a bit new age belief, with interesting backgrounds and their own secrets. When Rafferty and Llewellyn find Moon’s real name, their investigation takes another turn, one that leads them to a murky and hidden past. This secret in his past is one that could very well create the anger necessary to perpetuate this murder.

As they learn more about Jasper Moon, they try to read the real man behind the facade. Is he the egocentric man they hear about from some of their sources? On the other hand, is he the misunderstood, warm and generous man they are now beginning to develop a picture of? Finding out the truth about the man will lead them to the killer. However, with many of the players and pieces not being what they seem, can they unmask the real murderer?

Inspector Rafferty is a fun and slightly old-fashioned officer. He is not quite politically correct and has a tendency to put his foot in it. He is quite intelligent and seems to have a brooding manner. He is the opposite of his partner and together they seem to have an unbeatable team. Llewellyn is not just intelligent in the classic way, he is also well-schooled and entirely politically correct. He is young and in love, and he is the perfect foil for Rafferty.

The interplay and conversation between the two is fun and they are constantly trying to outdo the other. Together they are able to find the hidden intricacies, those small clues that finally lead them to the brutal murderer of Moon.

Due to the very nature of the jobs they do and the fields they work in, the other cast of characters are colorful and slightly eccentric. Evans has done a great job of building their characters and putting together a picture of their  antics. In a funny way, they bring to mind a circus setting and yet that is only due to the color and overdone attitudes. There is also something just a bit dark and dangerous that stirs beneath as well.

I would recommend this book for the suspense aficionado. The dynamic duo of Rafferty and Llewellyn will surely be featured in further works. There is color and fun to the story as well as secrets and darkness. The interplay is good and Evens slowly guides you through the red herrings to unmask the real killer. This is a slow-building murder mystery, with just a bit of humor, something for everyone who enjoys a bit of the unusual.

About Leslie Wright

Leslie Wright is an author and blogger in the Northwest.