A Jimmy Veeder Fiasco by Johnny Shaw
Review: Jimmy Veeder is drawn into searching for the missing daughter of his best friend Bobby Maves, a man known for his "Mavescapades" — outrageous adventures usually involving alcohol and violence — in Plaster City, the second book in this series by Johnny Shaw.
Set two years after the previous book in this series — Dove Season, not reviewed — Jimmy has settled into a routine life: married, a young son, and a farm to manage. He's understandably reluctant to get involved with Bobby, but his daughter is only 16-years-old and though she's run away before, this time she's been gone a week. They find her, however they don't like the situation she's in: one of several teenaged girls involved in fight club-type activities, where one beats the other senseless, filmed and distributed online. Convinced she's being held against her will, Jimmy and Bobby head out to rescue her.
The storyline of Plaster City is straight-forward enough, not completely predictable but not altogether surprising either. What will attract and keep readers — or put them off entirely — is the character of Jimmy Veeder. (The story is told from his perspective.) His friend Bobby is kind of a jerk, and not even the fun to be around kind, and it's hard to understand why Jimmy keeps coming back for more. Yet it is their lifelong friendship and a sense of unquestioned loyalty, no matter what, that keep the two together. The author, via Jimmy Veeder, definitely has a way with words, often crafting elegant prose to describe whatever situation they're in that is a pleasure to read. (It should also be noted the language typically used is rough in the extreme. The contrast between the almost lyrical nature of the sentences and the words used to construct them can be jarring.) Those looking for happy endings probably won't find what they're seeking here, but the book does come to a close on a somewhat odd note, implying that this might be the last (after only two entries) in the series. It seems hard to believe — or accept — that Jimmy and Bobby won't have another "fiasco" in their lives.
Acknowledgment: Thomas & Mercer provided a copy of Plaster City for this review.
Review Copyright © 2014 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Thomas & Mercer (Trade Paperback), September 2012
ISBN-13: 9781612184395; ISBN-10: 1612184391
Location(s) referenced in Plaster City: Imperial Valley, California
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Plaster City by Johnny Shaw — A Jimmy Veeder Fiasco
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: May 2014
List Price: $14.95
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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