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Sleuth Slayer.

Sleuth Slayer

Jeffrey B. Burton & Bruce W. Burton

Pocol Press

6023 Pocol Drive, Clifton VA 20124-1333

ISBN 9781929763320, $17.95,

"Diminutive, Yoda-faced P. Jax Thornton III sat on my sagging couch, nursed the tepid root beer I'd poured him, from what was maybe a halfway rinsed coffee mug with a busted handle that'd been turning into a Petri dish in my sink." It is 2:30 am and mystery writer Guy Davitt is awakened by a visit from fellow writer Jax who has concerns about the recent deaths of two other mystery authors. A month ago, Angus MacDougall was found dead with the cause of death determined to be alcohol poisoning. Just the day prior to Jax's visit, Alexandra Case was found dead due to smoke inhalation. Jax believes that these deaths are more than just a random coincidence.

Although at the time Guy had dismissed Jax's suspicions, he soon found himself placing more value in his friend's beliefs. Shortly after their talk Jax was the victim of a fatal car crash on a twisting canyon road. Therefore, yet another mystery author was dead. After Guy pays his respects to the Thornton family, Jax's father tells him that he is welcome to clean out Jax's writing area and take whatever he wants. Guy uses this as an opportunity to see if he can find any evidence confirming Jax's suspicions that there is a mystery-writer serial-killer out there.

To see what others think about the recent chain of events, Guy posts the information that he has in a mystery writers' chat room. In the numerous responses to his post, he receives a rather unusual comment from someone he does not know with the user name of "Scythe." "Scythe's" coded, chilling comment infers that Guy is going to be one of the next victims. Soon after, another writer, Frances Whiting, shows up on Guy's doorstep claiming that she too had almost been a murder victim as she was attacked on her yacht, but had escaped. Together they work to determine who is behind the serial slayings and to try to unravel the mystery.

As you can see in the quote at the beginning of my review, Burton and Burton are very talented at writing descriptive passages. Whether I wanted to or not, I could vividly picture what was growing inside of that coffee mug. This skillful writing combined with a strong plot will have you turning the pages in anticipation of what is coming next. There are many twists and turns throughout the book and just when you think you have it all figured out you will be proven wrong.

"Sleuth Slayer" is a fast-paced novel from start to finish with no dull moments in between. The writing is suspenseful and the characters are memorable. I think that any fan of the mystery genre will truly enjoy this book. I would love to see this novel become the beginning of a series and I look forward to reading more from the authors in the future.
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Author:Aures, Kam
Publication:MBR Bookwatch
Article Type:Book review
Date:May 1, 2008
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