A Cordell Logan Mystery by David Freed
Review: Just before Dorian Munz is executed for the crime of capital murder of Ruth Walker, he again professes his innocence, claiming another man is responsible. His final plea might have been ignored, but the man he accuses is Greg Castle, whose company is on the verge of securing a major government defense contract. Castle's close friend, Hub Walker, the father of the woman Munz was convicted of killing, hires flight instructor and sometime private investigator Cordell Logan to prove the accusation false, in Fangs Out, the second mystery in this series by David Freed.
Logan heads to San Diego where Castle Robotics is located. Assuming that the relevant parties would welcome his asking a few questions, he's instead met with open hostility from nearly all involved. Only one, Ruth's best friend Janet Bollinger, seems interested in speaking to Logan, but when he goes to talk to her, he finds her fatally stabbed … coincidentally in the same manner that killed Ruth Walker. Logan, a sometime Buddhist as well as a sometime investigator, doesn't buy it. "True Buddhists don't believe in coincidence. They believe that cause and effect rule the universe." This becomes even more evident when his plane is sabotaged, nearly killing him and his two passengers. Logan is convinced that Dorian Munz was convicted and executed for a crime he did not commit, and that the real killer of Ruth Walker will do everything possible to prevent Logan discovering the truth.
Setting aside the wildly improbable premise upon which Cordell Logan comes to be involved in this investigation, the murder mystery that unfolds is a good one, exceptionally well plotted with plenty of nicely positioned twists and turns and cleverly conceived paths of misdirection. Logan is the kind of character that seems to, at one point or another, rub everyone he meets the wrong way, and yet comes across as almost charming to the reader. He's sarcastic but also witty, and his mental analysis of every situation appears to be reasoned and credible. Probably the only element of the book that doesn't work is Logan's relationship with his ex-wife, Savannah. They're still a couple but yet they aren't. Whenever there is a scene with just the two of them, it feels like an unwelcome intrusion on the story. That she's rather unlikeable as a character doesn't help. And she's not going away, either; the book ends on a note that suggests she'll be around for a long, long, very long time to come.
Acknowledgment: The Permanent Press provided an eARC of Fangs Out for this review.
Review Copyright © 2013 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
The Permanent Press (Hardcover), May 2012
ISBN-13: 9781579622725; ISBN-10: 1579622720
Location(s) referenced in Fangs Out: California
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Fangs Out by David Freed — A Cordell Logan Mystery
Publisher: The Permanent Press
Publication Date: April 2013
List Price: $29.95
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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