An online marketing consultant, an avid reader of 400 + books a year. Professional reader, reviewer, and blogger. Enjoy ARCs and new releases.
By: Linwood Barclay
Series: Promise Falls 1.5
Publication Date: 1/12/2016
My Rating: 4 Stars
Linwood Barclay returns following BROKEN PROMISE(Promise Falls #1), landing on my Top Books of 2015 with a teaser novella FINAL ASSIGNMENT (Promise Falls #1.5) -with more evil at play, in the small town of Promise Falls; where nothing is as it appears.
Set in a fictional upstate New York small town outside of Albany, called Promise Falls—a town slowly dying—quickly adding “people” as well as businesses to the demise.
With all the action and mysterious crime happening in Promise Falls—Final Assignment, makes it way to the high school with a group of teens and parents --bullying, social media, revenge, murder, and a damaging short story.
For all you fans-- some appearances with characters from Book #1 return.
Cal Weaver, PI has been called to one of the more upscale neighborhoods of Promise Falls from a frantic mom, Greta, requesting some dirt on the local high school staff. Their son, Chandler apparently had written a colorful short story for one of his classes—now he finds himself being treated like some sort of psychotic degenerate. Chandler’s English teacher asked them to write something creative, and imaginative.
His story was of one kid beating another kid to death with a baseball bat—the mom thought it was innovative thinking. There was a meeting at school, and they are questioning the writing and his mental state. They want him to go for counseling or psychiatric testing. The parents are appalled –plenty people write dark and creepy things—referring to writers, Poe, Lovecraft and King. Right?
Upon questioning, turns out there was some earlier problems. Chandler and his friend, Michael Vaughn had made fun of a gay guy at school - Joel. They took a photo of him with another guy and posted it. Joel was upset with the invasion of privacy as well as the family.
The mother wants to blackmail the son’s teachers so they will leave her son alone; (she uses the word, leverage). Fight fire with fire. Cal Weaver wants no part of this.
Michael’s mom is a friend of the family, and Suzanne is now calling Cal for help. Michael did not come home. He is missing. Now in the middle, he is trying to help.
However, soon thereafter an event occurs, identical to the short story. A murder. A baseball bat. The woods. Exactly like the story. Is someone trying to frame Chandler? Motive? Revenge? He and Michael had been fighting over a girl recently, or could it be Joel?
Police detective, Barry Duckworth, (donut lover) is back and on the case. Cal is one step ahead with some information. A baseball bat, a murder weapon, and a mystery case of whodunit.
We also meet Lucy Brighton, the head of the guidance department at the school. (Look out for more from Lucy and Cal in) FAR FROM TRUE. Get out your score card, as there is so much in store, it will keep your head spinning!
Highly recommend this entertaining crime thriller series, mixed with humor. Barclay is the "King" of creative cliffhangers.