Title: Murder of Ravens
Author: Paty Jager
Publication Date: January 20, 2019
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers
Gabriel Hawke is on his usual route when he sees a wildlife biologist, Marlene Zetter, standing over a dead body that is wearing a wolf-tracking collar. Hawke notices two sets of tracks, one of which matched the boots on the victim. The other set belongs to the killer. The killer’s footprints appear to be that of the poachers that he’s been tracking all day.
The next day, he finds a woman who appears to be lost in the woods. She seems to be searching for her husband, unaware of the fact that he’s dead. As the investigation proceeds, Hawke finds out that the murder victim was none other than Ernest Cusack, the local restaurant owner. Ernest had had quite a reputation – he couldn’t keep his hands off the waitresses working at his restaurant. With a lot of husbands wanting Cusack dead, who could have killed him with a wolf collar? Hawke decides to investigate.
The setting of the story is wonderful. A forest, a sleepy town full of gossip mongers, animals, farms and hunting – a perfect setting for a murder mystery. The list of suspects is long, after all, the victim was quite ‘popular’.
Apart from Hawke’s excellent detective skills (given the fact that he’s a trooper and not a cop), his emotional side is well portrayed in the story. There comes a time when Hawke knows that he has to choose between his best friend and telling her the truth about the perp. Hawke’s wife walked out of the house a couple of years ago when he arrested his brother-in-law in a drug-related case. Does history repeat again? With Hawke now liking Justine and Justine’s sister Leanne as one of the main suspects in the murder case, things are going to get real murky for Hawke.
The victim – Ernest Cusack, has a juicy story of his own. Not only was he getting all handsy with the waitresses, he also had a couple of extra marital affairs by the side. Leanne Welch and Abigail Kahn, two married women to whom Ernest was sending a cheque every month.
I have never read a story before that involves the ancient Indian art of tracking and forests and troopers and this book came as a pleasant surprise. I loved the story. Halfway through the book, the identity of the perp is revealed but the ending turned out to be quite surprising. Three ladies wanting revenge on a man who cheated on them. But wait, it doesn’t just end there!
The only thing I think that could be better with the story is the names of the animals. Hawke’s dog is called Dog and one of his horses is called Horse. I wish they could be named something else. But otherwise, the story is interesting and engaging, no doubt about that.
Thank you, Lori Caswell from Escape with Dollycas for giving me an opportunity to be a part of this blog tour.
There’s a giveaway for this tour. If you like to win a print copy of Paty Jager’s Murder of Ravens, click here.