Friday 22 July 2022



A down-and-out, wheelchair-bound lonely man calls 911 from a trailer that’s just burst into flames. The tragic fire claims the man’s life. It seems like an accident until the cops find a few arguments against that theory. And another puzzler — the dispatcher seems to be keeping some dangerous secrets…

Police psychologist Dot Meyerhoff, on call to counsel police station employees, soon finds herself trying to help the traumatized dispatcher. But as the action-packed investigation accelerates, Dot can’t help but get drawn into an ever-expanding series of crimes seemingly orchestrated by the scariest prison mastermind this side of Hannibal Lecter.

As Dot helps track down the possible arsonist, she proves herself a sensitive yet doggedly persistent sleuth — even when ordered to mind her own business. The gripping case drags her through the seedy underbelly of her small town, and finally to the local prison. During a couple of risky trips to the lockup, she becomes reacquainted with the imprisoned puppetmaster, who also happens — coincidentally? — to be a menacing old friend…

Colleagues and friends keep warning her away from the ruthless and powerful criminal, which is excellent advice, right? If only good advice were easy to take...

The adventures of Dr. Dot strike a rare chord in the mystery genre: author Kirschman crafts emotionally intelligent and action-packed stories that will appeal equally to fans of traditional mysteries (especially British ones), discerning cozy readers, and all admirers of nosy women sleuths. Dot’s latest tale will especially delight fans of psychologist mysteries like those created by Jonathan Kellerman, Meg Gardiner, Val McDermid, and Jacqueline Winspear.

The Answer To His Prayers is the fourth Dot Meyerhoff mystery from author Ellen Kirschman. I've enjoyed the first three; Burying Ben, The Right Wrong Thing and The Fifth Reflection. The fourth was no exception.

Our main protagonist Dot is still working as a police psychologist, still butting heads with Chief Pence, still with boyfriend/fiance Frank and still having regular differences of opinions with her mother. She's due to get married soon and she is undergoing therapy herself. She has doubts and concerns over her upcoming nuptials having been hurt immeasurably in the past by her first husband.

She's also still a bit of a sh*t magnet cum busy body when it comes to getting involved in active police investigations. 

Arson, death - either murder or accidental, trauma counselling, a prison visit, a blast from the past, a gang boss manipulating Dot and pulling her strings, a missing family, a despatcher with secrets, a feisty headstrong female cop,  a jailbreak, a kidnapping, an unhappy husband-to-be, a sting operation and eventually answers to all the questions posed at the beginning of the book.

It's a quick, busy entertaining read with a decent plot, interesting characters and a satisfying outcome. I hope there will be more Dot Meyerhoff books in the future.    

This was probably a bit of a change-up from my usual reading, but it was a welcome one. It's good to mix things up every so often and it keeps my reading fresh, enjoying different sub-genres within the crime and mystery field.

4 stars from 5 

Read - July, 2022
Published - 2021
Page count - 166
Source - review copy from author
Format - PDF read on laptop


  1. You know, Col, I like the sound of this series. I've not 'met' Dot before, but she sounds like a good character, and I can see how she'd be a credible sleuth. And I respect an author who can keep up the quality over a series of books.

    1. Margot, I do think this is a series you could enjoy.