Saturday, August 5, 2017

ARC Review: Dead Man's Bridge by Robert J. Mrazek

Dead Man's Bridge
Author: Robert J. Mrazek
Series: Jake Cantrell Mystery
Publication: Crooked Lane Books (August 8, 2017)

Description: For fans of Linwood Barclay, this exhilarating series debut by award-winning author Robert Mrazek features former Army officer Jake Cantrell as he tries to solve a series of murders at a small college town in upstate New York.

Unfairly disgraced former army officer Jake Cantrell has only one friend left: Bug, a wolf-dog he saved while serving in Afghanistan. Together, they try to put his bitter past behind him and Jake settles for employment at the bottom rung of the campus security ladder of a small upstate New York college. But things only turn worse when the college’s richest and most powerful alumnus is found hanging from a campus footbridge on the eve of homecoming weekend.

Jake is convinced the man was murdered, but with no credibility to his name, no one agrees―at least not until a second body is found hanging from the same bridge. But as a vicious hurricane sweeps up the Eastern seaboard, the clock is ticking and it’s only a matter of time before the killer strikes again.

Trusting his instincts, Jake puts his own life in peril as he attempts to uncover the buried secrets at the heart of the murders in acclaimed author Robert J. Mrazek’s Dead Man’s Bridge, the first in a new heart-pounding mystery series sure to keep readers hooked until the very last page.

My Thoughts: Jake Cantrell was wrongly court-martialed from the army. His only companion is a wolf-dog named Bug that he found in Afghanistan. But now Bug is eighteen and suffering from cancer. Jake is working as a security guard at the upper New York college where he graduated and was a football star. His roommate Jordan Langford is now the college president. Jake is drinking too much and just sort of drifting. He is constantly at odds with the spit and polish Captain of Security.

The story begins with Jake being called out to a suspicious death. An alumnus is found hanging from a walking bridge over a gorge separating the college buildings from a residential area. Jake suspects murder but the Captain and the local police are quick to write it off as a suicide. Jake learns that the man was a very successful alumnus who had just gifted the college with $50 million when he is called in to talk to his friend Jordan.

Jordan has another problem: he is being blackmailed for $5 million. He either pays up or his sexual peculiarities will be exposed which will ruin his reputation. Jake agrees to investigate. He believes that the two things, the blackmail and the murder, are connected. He has about 24 hours to investigate which would be too short a time even without the fact that a hurricane is causing havoc with the weather too.

When the first murder victim's best friend is also found hanging on the same bridge, the tension escalates. And when the third best friend goes missing from his hospital room, the tension escalates further. Jake's investigations lead him to blackmailers, shady investigators, even shadier lawyers and a revenge plot.

This was a fast paced thriller with an engaging main character. I look forward to more mysteries starring Jake Cantrell.

Favorite Quote:
Why had I come back here? I asked myself for the thousandth time. I knew it wasn't to endure the taunts of people like Jim Dickey, although I had heard plenty of worse things said about me during my court-martial trial. After I let the army finish me off, I didn't really care what happened anymore.
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love getting comments. Let me know what you think.

This blog is now officially declared an Award Free zone! I do appreciate your kindness in thinking of me and I am humbled by your generosity.

Your comments are award enough for me. Comment away!