Sunday 22 August 2021



Synopsis/blurb ....

Tanner Fritz has it all—he’s good-looking, well-liked, fabulously wealthy, and has a beautiful wife. He’s a veritable well of goodwill and happiness.

So why do his four best friends want him dead?

Each of them believes they have a genuine reason—he stole Marty’s wife, swindled Carson out of a fortune, caused Barry’s traumatic brain injury, and… well, no one is exactly sure why Serena wants to kill him.

The foursome’s grievances quickly escalate into something truly terrifying, planning Tanner’s murder—only to run into a seemingly insurmountable hitch. Who actually gets to do the deed? Who has suffered the most at his hands?

A cacophony of bumbling exploits follow as each tries to off Tanner Fritz, while the other three sabotage those efforts. Sprinkled with site gags and belly laughs to tickle both the cultured and the philistine, No Dibs on Murder pulls no punches… and neither do these harebrained would-be killers.

From the authors of Fallen City and The Last Collar.

My first time with author Lawrence Kelter, not so with other half, Frank Zafiro. No Dibs on Murder is, I think their third collaboration and it was an entertaining outing.

Four friends team up to kill their uber-successful other best friend, Tanner Fritz, drawing lots to decide who gets the privilege of doing the deed. None of the four wants the others to succeed, each feel a severe sense of grievance towards Tanner. Slightly puzzlingly for this reader, three of the four's motives are on display and valid (if you can justify murder), the fourth never really gets an airing. The why's of Serena's ill-will towards Fritz (unless I missed something when her turn came) left a bit of a hole for me in the narrative.

Amusing, farcical bordering on slapstick at sometimes, heart-warming - Barry finding a soulmate - and engaging. The premise was interesting, if a little far-fetched and I was keen to see how it all panned out. Does Fritz live to fight another day? Which one of the four, if any gets satisfaction? Was Fritz really such a bad egg or were we only really getting the perspective of one side of their disagreements and misunderstandings?

Not all of the four portrayed well as victims. Carson, in particular was a bit of a tool and full of self-pity. He couldn't see his own failings as a friend or as a person. Barry was sympathetic. I could understand his frustrations with his situation. The other two, Marty and Serena made less of an impression on me. I felt for Marty having Carson in his social circle.  

I enjoyed the ending which gave the book a proper sense of closure. Predictable? Surprising? Should I have seen it coming? Maybe yes to all three.

An enjoyable book overall, but not one which blew me away if I'm honest. 

3 from 5 

Read - August, 2021
Published - 2021
Page count - 206
Source - review copy from one of the co-authors
Format - Kindle


  1. Well, it's for sure a really interesting a concept for a story, Col. And I sort of like the way the characters vary in how sympathetic they are - just like real people do. I give points here for innovation, and I'm glad you found it enjoyable.

    1. More to like than dislike, Margot. And yes, I enjoyed the premise of the book and most of the execution of the story!