Chip Off the Ice Block Murder
Review: Shay O'Hanlon is looking forward to spending New Year's Eve with her girlfriend, Minneapolis cop JT Bordeaux, at a quiet resort when she's called to her father's bar to deal with a delivery of beer. When her father doesn't show up for what would likely be one of the busiest nights of the year, Shay cancels her trip and spends the evening serving customers, all the while wondering what happened to him, in Chip Off the Ice Block Murder, the fourth mystery in this series by Jessie Chandler.
Shay's anger at her father turns to concern when the police show up looking for Pete O'Hanlon. His gun has turned up in a block of ice that also contained a dead man, shot with the very same gun. He's wanted for questioning and is most certainly a person of interest. But Shay has no idea where he is. He was last seen playing poker with his friends so she decides to start with the obvious: questioning everyone at the table to see if any of them can help. And then she finds papers suggesting her father was approached to sell the bar, something she's sure he wouldn't do under any circumstances. Could someone be putting pressure on him? And why would someone want a bar that has serious sewer damage in the basement, something that will cost a small fortune to fix?
Chip Off the Ice Block Murder is subtitled a "caper" but it is a fairly traditional murder mystery. The dead man is Chuck Schuler, a con man with multiple aliases, but also the man who offered to buy the bar. Did Pete O'Hanlon kill him? Probably not, but if not, then who? And why? And where is Shay's father? If he's innocent, why did he disappear? All good questions, and all the basis for a nicely constructed mystery. Pete's friends at the poker party are an odd group, and it's very entertaining following Shay along as she meets with each. But that can go on only so long before Shay more or less runs out of ideas on what to do next. The mystery tends to solve itself in the end, with Shay being more of an obstacle in the culprit's grand plan than the person responsible for gleaning the solution. Still, it's all good fun from a whodunit and whydunit perspective, and the book ends with a new challenge for Shay, not a mystery per se, but one that will nonetheless have readers looking forward to the next in the series to see how it plays out.
Acknowledgment: Midnight Ink provided an eARC of Chip Off the Ice Block Murder for this review.
Review Copyright © 2014 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Location(s) referenced in Chip Off the Ice Block Murder: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota
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Chip Off the Ice Block Murder by Jessie Chandler — A Shay O'Hanlon Mystery
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: May 2014
List Price: $14.99
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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