Wednesday 12 October 2022



Synopsis/blurb ...

Jack thought he had stumbled into an easy free-lance news story for The Boston Globe. Bobby Mullaney and his wife, Melanie, are strange but amiable hippies running a marijuana legalization movement in rural Maine. Bobby's friend and sidekick Coyote is a disturbing tough-guy and, Jack suspects, a liar, yet the three of them have an interesting argument to make, so Jack begins unfolding their tale. But the story takes an ugly turn when Bobby and Coyote disappear and Melanie, unable to go to the police, turns to Jack for help. He follows a lead that takes him to Bobby's hometown, known for its murderous traffickers in the hard-core drug trade. No one has seen Bobby, but Coyote has, apparently, been asking questions. When Bobby's charred car turns up with a body burned beyond recognition inside, Jack must find out what happened between the two men, and exactly what kind of murder has taken place.

Another enjoyable encounter with Gerry Boyle and his series character, Jack McMorrow.

Here I spent 10 hours, traipsing around rural Maine in the company of McMorrow. Here, he's initially chasing a story about a local legalize marijuana campaign. As is wont to happen when Jack is around, it soon morphs into a missing persons investigation and twists again into murder and something else besides.

There's a great setting with an interesting exploration of the area, mainly in the sticks, but some urban outings. Boyle throws up a lively debate regarding pot and the pros and cons regarding legalisation. Hard to have an opinion on it when I don't use. Some of the penalties imposed on people using it for purely medicinal purposes seem unduly harsh, and yeah I know its fiction and in the quarter of a century since the book was published things have very probably changed regarding the legal situation. I'm sure law enforcement could probably be doing more worthy tasks than chasing people smoking a bit of weed.

Again, like in the first three books, Jack goes all in and is soon in danger. Fortunately, trusted friend Clare has his back.

I like Boyle's writing and the way he spins his tale. It takes a while to get where we are eventually headed, but it's a decent ride getting there. There's another seven or eight books in the series and I have a few more of them in the Audible library which I'll be looking forward to.

4 stars from 5

Lifeline (1996), Bloodline (1995)  and Deadline (1993)  have been enjoyed previously. 

Read - (listened to) September, 2022
Published - 1997
Page count - 360 (10 hrs 7 mins)
Source - Audible purhcase
Format - Audible


  1. Just the other day, got my hands on Boyle’s first Jack McMorrow novel – thanks to an earlier review of yours.

    1. Elgin, I hope you enjoy it when you get to it.