The Sky Took Him
An Alafair Tucker Mystery by Donis Casey
Review: Donis Casey's stellar fourth mystery, The Sky Took Him, has Alafair Tucker traveling to her sister's home in Enid when she learns her brother-in-law is dying. But the missing husband of her niece becomes her real concern. What has he gotten himself in to now?
When Ruth Ann, Alafair's sister, writes telling her of her husband's imminent death, Alafair knows she must come quickly. This is what family is all about. She, her eldest daughter, Martha, and youngest, Grace, take the train from their home in Muskogee, Oklahoma to her sister's home in Enid. Here they find Lester very frail and totally bedridden. His business rests in the hands of his partner and his only daughter, Olivia. Olivia's husband, Kenneth, is also involved but Lester has little trust or confidence in his son-in-law. For reasons known only to Kenneth, he is away on business. When he doesn't return home when he is scheduled to, Olivia gets in touch with the businesses he had said he was contacting, only to be told no contacts were ever made. Where had Kenneth gone, and where is he now? Some members of the family suspect that Kenneth has gotten himself into some illegal situation. This gives Martha cause to worry that her mother will haul off and get herself into some pickle again. It seems Alafair has a habit of sniffing around where she isn't welcome and running afoul of those who could do her harm. Will she be able to find Kenneth? If so, what condition will he be in?
Although the mystery in The Sky Took Him starts out as a simple case of a missing person, it soon becomes clear that the real mystery is Kenneth himself. He owes a "ruthless business man in town" thousands of dollars that was used to invest in an oil well driller. He may be shipping smuggled goods to Mexico through the family business. He has evidently hidden something, because his office, his home and the oil well site are all broken into and trashed. What is he trying to hide? And from whom?
But this book is more than a mystery. It's also a study in family relationships. Alafair and Martha take a hard look at their own mother-daughter relationship and communicate their feelings about life and death, the love of parents and children, of untold dreams and hopes for the future.
The Sky Took Him is an awesome book that contrasts a gripping mystery with the story of a caring, loving family. Balancing page-turning suspense with passages of love and laughter, this is one of the year's best books.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of The Sky Took Him.
Acknowledgment: Poisoned Pen Press provided an ARC of The Sky Took Him for this review.
Review Copyright © 2009 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
The Drop Edge of Yonder
Poisoned Pen Press (Hardcover), October 2007
ISBN-13: 9781590584460; ISBN-10: 1590584465
Location(s) referenced in The Sky Took Him: Oklahoma
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The Sky Took Him by Donis Casey — An Alafair Tucker Mystery
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Publication Date: January 2009
List Price: $24.95
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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