Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Review: Deadline Man Fantastic Mystery!

Deadline Man
Deadline Man

By Jon Talton

Poisoned Pen Press
ISBN: 9781590587232
287 Pages

You know how some books are called page-turners? Well, Deadline Man, by Jon Talton, is what I've coined a "read-faster!" I don't really know whether it was the writing, his style, the main character's profession, or the suspenseful mystery, but I found myself moving faster and faster across the words to see what was going to happen next! Fantastic!

He was now a well-read Business Financial columnist, having worked himself up from writing obits at Seattle Free Press, a privately owned newspaper that had, under its previous leader been a strong contender in being first in hard news on major issues. However, on her death, the family was interested only in getting their money and if that meant selling the newspaper, then so be it. One of the problems they faced, however, was that there might not be any buyers, given the declining industry.

And it was just a routine interview with Hardesty, whose hedge fund had just invested $75M into a new startup, which he was enjoying, when everything started to go south. He had merely tried to gain new material for his column and picked out a company, Olympic International, that had not been highlighted for many years. But later he would push to remember everything that had happened that day.

--He had heard on the news immediately before the interview that Megan Nyberg, a teenager, was missing.

--He was still thinking about his previous night with Pam, while Troy teased him about being involved with Rachel Summers. Actually he normally had three or four lovers at any given time...

--A blond had shoved past him as he was leaving; he remembered her later when she was trying to kill him.

--Troy Henderson fell from his high-rise terrace immediately after he had left!

--During the interview, Troy had asked him casually whether he had ever heard of eleven-eleven...

And then he wrote his first column on Olympic International...

After that, he was running for his life as men who professed to be FBI pursued him, a prostitute yells after him, "eleven-eleven--you'll get yours!" And he finds himself in bed with Pam, who is dead.

Needless to say, I loved this one. I enjoyed learning about the newspaper business mechanics, such as the lede spelling change, and empathize with the individual employees as they feared losing their job and considered what they would do. Talton has shared a real-time issue with readers as he has also given us a beautifully entwined mystery that keeps readers guessing, but meticulously comes together as if the author had created a tapestry!

This is a must-read for mystery lovers...well above a 1-5 ranking, earning a 9 or 10 in my opinion! Let me know if you agree!

Book Provided Through
Net Galley by Publisher

G. A. Bixler

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