Review: After a young man is killed with a shotgun in a halfway house where Gus Biletnikov is staying, Conway Sax wonders if Gus might have been the real target in Shotgun Lullaby, the third mystery in this series by Steve Ulfelder.
Gus is the estranged son of financier Peter Biletnikov and a recovering addict under the stewardship of Conway. That Gus bears an uncanny resemblance to Conway's own estranged son Roy is both comforting and troubling to him. But when Gus betrays Conway's trust and starts up with drugs again, Conway throws him out … only to find him dead of a shotgun blast a day later. Guilt compels him to investigate Gus's murder, drawing him into a complicated network of relationships, both professional and — more dangerously — personal.
Shotgun Lullaby is a gritty crime thriller, frequently violent but in an ends justify the means sort of way. Conway Sax is the kind of man who's told that "overthinking a situation is not a malady from which you suffer." It's not that he isn't smart or clever, but that he tends to act before he considers the consequences of his actions. Written from his perspective, the reader is drawn into his thought process all the time. Sometimes it's relatively clear; more often it's not, with short, staccato sentence-paragraphs reviewing the present situation and what he can discern from it. The storyline is nicely structured with just the right amount of complication. A fine whodunit-style mystery overall, even if the whodunit aspect is not one of its strongest elements.
Acknowledgment: Minotaur Books provided a copy of Shotgun Lullaby for this review.
Review Copyright © 2013 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
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Minotaur Books (Hardcover), May 2014
ISBN-13: 9781250028105; ISBN-10: 1250028108
Location(s) referenced in Shotgun Lullaby: Boston, Springfield, Massachusetts
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Shotgun Lullaby by Steve Ulfelder — A Conway Sax Mystery
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Publication Date: May 2013
List Price: $25.99
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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