I downloaded this to my Kindle because #1: I enjoy detective/cop thrillers and #2: I actually live in the Prospect community (Yes, there is really a wide place in the road bearing that moniker.) I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The character development kept me entertained throughout and makes me yearn for more stories centered around Chief Sam Jenkins. The story moved at a good clip, and there was never a dull moment. I delighted in reading about familiar places and in trying to figure out if some of the characters were emulating actual personalities. Of course, "if ye ain't from around here" other readers will not experience these same pleasures I had the great fortune to enjoy. It was so refreshing to see an outsider stand up to the "good ole boy" workings of a small community and emerge with his self respect and the respect of others intact. Sam Jenkins represents what most of us would like to be, and his straightforward but fair manner makes him most likeable. Mr. Zurl, if you'll keep on writing, I'll keep reading.
Wayne Zurl’s A New Prospect introduces the world to Sam Jenkins, formerly retired police officer, and brand new police Chief of Prospect, Tennessee. When he’s thrown into Prospect’s first murder on his first day on the force, the game’s afoot (as both Sherlock Holmes and Sam, himself, would say). Barred from investigation by the FBI, Sam nevertheless sets out to find the murderer.
I liked Sam Jenkins from the moment he’s introduced, but Zurl captures his reader long before that in the prologue when he introduces characters germaine to later action. Zurl’s narrative is easy-going and easy to read, capturing Sam’s persona, which renders the narrator’s voice personable and real. Jenkins is about as honest a narrator as they come, letting the reader in on his every thought, and I do mean every, including his unabashed attraction to the female characters he meets.
In Prospect, Zurl has created a bucolic, near backwater town, populated with intriguing characters enough to rival that of Mayberry. This parallel is deliberate; Zurl frequently interjects references to popular culture from the fifties through the seventies, showing that Jenkins identifies with the detectives and cowboys that went before him. These allusions imply Zurl’s writing is for an older audience of about thirty and up, which he acknowledges in the persona of Sam. When those around him don’t get his allusions, rather than feel past his prime, Sam is energized by their confusion.
I really enjoyed my trip to Prospect and the time spent with Sam. I hope to visit with him (and Zurl) again, sometime soon.
Note: I was gifted an eCopy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
A New Prospect is a new Sam Jenkins murder mystery series.
Sam Jenkins is a retired cop from New York, however, after the local sheriff in Prospect, Tennessee is arrested for gun smuggling, Sam decides its time to get back to work. After applying for the job, the mayor, Ronnie Shield, accepts Sam's proposal and his new job begins. After introducing himself to his new staff and shoving his way past annoying secretaries, we come to learn the grit that makes Sam Jenkins who he is.
When Cecil Lovejoy, rich, arrogant and down right rude, is murdered, there is little love loss between the town and his murder. However, its up to Sam to find out the truth behind his death. When Sam's best friend becomes the number one suspect and Cecil's widow, Pearl, puts the pressure on Sam and his division, she goes outside his jurisdiction and uses her political influence to machinate his case. Feeling his way through all the antagonists in the case, Sam must use all his knowledge to make sure he doesn't punish the wrong person. With time ticking and pressure building, will Sam find his man or woman, before the justice system fails and the real culprit gets away?
I was quite impressed with the character of Sam, I liked his gritty, no-nonsense approach to his dealings with people and situations. I liked his friendly, comedic nature but was quite unimpressed with his thoughts on the "good-looking" women he comes in contact with. Though he is "happily" married, it doesn't stop his thoughts from straying, and, in my honest opinion, this is cheating. I found these passages disgusting to read, and unworthy of a character such as, Sam Jenkins.
I loved the intrigue and twists and turns involved, wrapping everything full circle and the plot didn't leave you with more questions than answers. I also found the back stories to be an integral part of the story, they gave insight into Sam's character that is needed to add more ambiance to Sam's presence. I didn't like the southern twang that some of the characters had, I don't know why authors feel the need to write this into their stories, accents seldom work when your reading them. I think its enough to know that a character has a thick southern accent and leave the reader to "hear" it for themselves.
A New Prospect is a great mystery read from debut author, Wayne Zurl and I would recommend it to anyone who loves a fast-paced, gripping, often comedic approach to a down-home southern murder.
This was a fun ride thru a homicide with a sarcastic, stubborn but gentle loving ex New York cop. Sam Jenkins decides on a whim to go out for police chief in this small town after seeing an opening in the news paper. The small town of Prospect should be an easy job after 20 years of police work in New York .But shortly after starting his new job in Prospect he gets his first crime public intox at the car show. To be followed up by a homicide, not just any homicide one of the local, wealthiest and most powerful locals: Cecil Lovejoy. This didn't turn out to be just any murder it's got twisted turn, greed, sex, hate, bribery and cover ups on the way to being solved. Sam Jenkins really has his work cut out for him this time, not to mention people are going out of their way to get him off the case. But that won't stop him and the fellow Prospect police department from sniffing around.
This was a mysterious, wonderful read, I really enjoyed the way the author added a hint of an old detective movie lines that Sam uses. Sam Jenkins is thrall, smart, honest and a hard working cop, with a cocky sense of humor; I loved his character. The author added some curves in the book I didn't see coming, which made for a intriguing ending. Not who I thought was responsible for the murder. This book keeps me chasing a killer along side, instead of in my head, well that's if you want to really call them a killer. Wayne Zurl has a marvelous imagination and is very creative with details. Leaves you at the end of the book with a sense of justice, if you believe that some laws should be bent, and that karma always gets their man.
A New Prospect by Wayne Zurl is a great mystery/detective novel featuring Sam Jenkins, a retired New York City cop, and his wife Kate. They retired to Prospect, a small town in Tennessee awhile back and Sam has decided to work again as the Police Chief of this relatively small and quiet town. He thinks that this will be a job that will be great for a retired person to spend some time at. He is wrong as he soon finds himself embroiled in the murder of a prominent man. While trying to investigate this murder he is thwarted by small town politics, from the mayor, to the father in law of the murdered victim, to the murdered man's family. What ensues is a great who dun-nit. It will have you thinking until the end. I hope to see a series of this small town of Prospect and its inhabitants. I recommend it for the mystery lover.