Saturday, January 14, 2012
Such Wicked Friends by Rod Hoisington
Cover Art by Mark Hoisington
Feisty, smart and sassy, Sandy Reid has traded in her whiplash field investigations for the courtroom...or has she? She has recently passed the bar and is now a criminal lawyer, but no staid lawyer is she. Retaining her voracious appetite for the truth, she turns the world of law on its ear.
Rod Hoisington's latest mystery all begins with a more or less routine phone call from a woman to Martin, her partner, the lawyer she "rents a desk from". He passes the arranged meeting with the client over to Sandy to deal with. Martin likes his cases to be simple and civil and meeting an unidentified woman with husband troubles after dark wasn't something he wanted to take on. Unfortunately, when Sandy finds the woman, she has a bullet hole in her forehead. From that moment on, matters go from bad to worse as she is taken away, cuffed, by the police. No residue is found on her hands, but Sandy sees a fair-sized blood stain on the back of her hand, wondering why no one has mentioned it. It makes her feel connected somehow to this woman she only met in death, as though it is a plea for help. Apparently she is the only one who can see it. She must also admit to touching, in fact to picking up an envelope from the woman's lap, and though she immediately put it back, she knows this is going to go badly for her. Sandy just can't keep out of the way of her old nemesis State Attorney Lawrence Moran and his ongoing vindictiveness toward her. She made the unforgivable mistake of proving him wrong when they first met. Now, on what should be a misdemeanor, he is going to do everything in his power to have her disbarred, and power is something he has in spades. On the other hand, Sandy has a few tricks up her sleeve, too, including Martin, who is well-versed in the law, and her current beau Det. Chip Bogard, with all his police knowledge, background and friends.
Enter the perennial party-goers Jenna and Brad, long-time friends of Martin, and he is introduced to Prissy, a dressed-down somewhat shapeless but nice-looking woman who zeroes in on him with lust and moneybags in her eyes. Though these people do not appear to have anything to do with the murdered woman, you just never know about people. What it does provide at this point is romantic entertainment for Martin, and the timing is right because he has just hired a caretaker for his father suffering from Alzheimers, giving Martin some worry-free freedom.
As it turns out, this seemingly innocuous "marital dispute" death, simple and sad, is more than it seems and will have global ramifications. Sandy will have proven herself once again, getting shot up in the process, one tough cookie, but fun as well. As Sandy might say to Moran "Put that in your pipe and smoke it!", or probably not quite in those words. Another great Sandy Reid mystery from Rod Hoisington. He just gets better and better. This story was very fast-paced, thrilling, sexy and funny by turns. I really enjoyed it.