Slow-paced, rambling story of the murder of sleazy Cecil by the new police chief of Prospect. Characters are painted in broad strokes, dialogue a bit corny, and solving the crime relies heavily on the guilty person rolling over at the first accusation based on flimsy evidence. Aside from the sordidness of Cecil, reading this book is akin to watching an episode of "Leave It To Beaver".
Sam Jenkins never thought about being a fish out of water during the twenty years he spent solving crimes in New York. But things change, and after retiring to Tennessee, he gets that feeling. Jenkins becomes a cop again and is thrown headlong into a murder investigation and a steaming kettle of fish, down-home style. The victim, Cecil Lovejoy, couldn't have deserved it more. His death was the inexorable result of years misspent and appears to be no great loss, except the prime suspect is Sam's personal friend. Jenkins' abilities are attacked when Lovejoy's influential widow urges politicians to reassign the case to state investigators. Feeling like "a pork chop at a bar mitzvah" in his new workplace, Sam suspects something isn't kosher when the family tries to force him out of the picture. In true Jenkins style, Sam turns common police practice on its ear to insure an innocent man doesn't fall prey to an imperfect system and the guilty party receives appropriate justice. A NEW PROSPECT takes the reader through a New South resolutely clinging to its past and traditional way of keeping family business strictly within the family.
I was really looking forward to this but was not as impressed as I had hoped to be. The story line is good and the character development was okay. I thought that Wayne Zurl took a lot of unnecessary time to describe things and lead up to any action. I was 50 or 60 pages into the book before any real action took place. I think that for the total number of pages of this book that is a lot of time and space for 'character and plot' development.
He does a good job writing with a southern drawl in parts so that the reader actually hears what they are reading. But there were actually other points in the book where it felt he was writing with a thesaurus in one hand and his script in the other and he used words that didn't make sense in the context.
Over all a good story. There is some language in it but the content is appropriate for a multitude of ages.
I received a free copy of this book from Black Rose Writing through Pump Up Your Book. Thanks!