Mystery Books for Sale

[ Home ]
[ About | Reviews | Search | Submit | Links ]


by Roberta Isleib
Berkley, March 2005
272 pages
ISBN: 0425201554

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Roberta Isleib might have subtitled this book 'Nightmare in Pinehurst.' Cassandra Burdette's visit to Pinehurst, North Carolina, sinks her into two nightmares.

She has agreed to be maid of honor at the wedding of her friend Jeanine Peters, a woman for whom the terms neurotic, manipulative, and self-absorbed were invented. Cassie is also to play in the tri-tour golf tournament, partnered with her mercurial on-again, off-again boyfriend Michael, and her father, who deserted Cassie and her mother some 20 years ago and has re-surfaced with new wife and sons, fully expecting to be welcomed with open arms.

The downhill slide begins when -- on the day of Jeanine's shower -- a body is found on the estate, a victim of a hit-and-run accident. Not long after, Jeanine's father goes missing, and the family must dance around his absence from the wedding festivities with the patently ridiculous excuse of an emergency business meeting.

Despite her promises to herself, to her shrink, and to her friends, Cassie cannot resist poking her nose in and asking questions, especially after it becomes clear that Jeanine's father was kidnapped and ransom demands are made.

Isleib excels at character creation. Cassie is a truly three-dimensional character, dealing with one crisis after another -- should she back off asking questions about Dan Peters' disappearance (Jeanine initially asked Cassie to investigate, but after ransom demands are made warns her to back off); should she resume/continue her often destructive relationship with Michael? How should she deal with Marian, the stepmother from hell, who is trying to prevent Cassie from having a relationship with her half-brothers?

The sense of the golf tournament, with all its players, caddies, and hangers-on is strongly developed. Perhaps there is a bit much about who hit what stroke when, but the details add to the aura of authenticity..

When, with Cassie's help, the police sort out the family squabbles and the family secrets, matches, both on and off the course, are made.

Reviewed by Mary Elizabeth Devine, March 2005

[ Top ]



Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

[ About | Reviews | Search | Submit | Links ]
[ Home ]