I won a copy of this book through a giveaway on GoodReads.com and the following is my honest opinion for it.
This is the first real mystery I’ve read/reviewed and the first time I’ve read anything written by William Manchee. The unfortunate thing for me is this is the 11th book in the Stan Turner series of mysteries so I don’t know anything about the main character for the series or any of the other characters, which might be either a good or bad thing.
Reading this book, I had visions of Perry Mason and his private detective Paul Drake coming to my mind. But unlike those stories I watched on television as a child, and now thanks to NetFlix I’m watching again, I found having two addition unrelated storylines to have been somewhat of a distraction to the main storyline revolving around three diners who died from poisoning at a well-known local restaurant in Dallas, Emilio’s; and a poor unsuspecting waiter who gets arrested for this crime. [The name of this restaurant, by coincidence is the name of an Italian restaurant my OH and I love to dine at.]
Of two distractions, the first involves his helping a new lawyer, Jodie Marshall with civil defense of a former Military Police officer who prevents a jewelry store from being robbed, but somehow winds up shooting the store’s owner instead.
The second distraction deals with Stan helping a immigrant from Pakistan who’s been conned out of his life’s savings by a thug, a thug who doesn’t give a damn about anything, especially anything regarding our legal systems and laws.
Neither of these two distractions have anything to do with the main premise of this book, other than infuriate Paula with Stan’s lack of attention to her and her needs.
Just as I mentioned in the above, the plot twists, the murder and the disappearances of witness are all reminiscent of the Perry Mason episodes I mentioned above. This also includes the surprise ending; which is why I found this book somewhat endearing.
As far as the book itself is concerned, I personally found having chapters heading with character’s names and which basically revolve around them to be somewhat of a distraction. But, then, I’ve read/reviewed about three other books in which their authors have used the same pattern for their chapters; so there must be a reason for it.
The writing lends itself to its readers for an enticing experience to keep turning the pages to the book’s conclusion.
Given the above, I’m happy to “Deadly Dining” 4 STARS.