William F. Brown; Published May 16th 2011 by Createspace (first published May 2011)
Curiosity can kill more than cats, but when Pete Talbott found himself at the wrong end of Gino Parini’s .45 reading his own obituary, it was a mystery he couldn’t leave alone. From the cornfields of Ohio to the gritty slums of Chicago, a bloody kitchen in a Back Bay townhouse, New York’s Washington Square, and the nation’s Capitol itself, the hunt is on. Someone with a penchant for sharp scalpels and embalming tables is planting bodies under other people’s names, and if Talbott doesn’t stop them, he and his quirky new girlfriend Sandy Kasmarek will be next on the Undertaker’s list.
– Goodreads on The Undertaker
0_0 You know what’s the worst thing that could happen to someone that is sort of susceptible to conspiracy theories? Reading a well written novel that makes them go “A-HA!! I KNEW it!!!”. This is one of those novels.
One of the end results of reading it is I got freaked out by how possible it felt this could be a real story. You ever have that feeling, after reading a thriller/suspense?
Anyways, the novel kicks off very strong, with what I think is one of the most memorable scenes (for me). I stayed clear of knives at home the day I read that lovely bit, that’s how richly done it is. And then it got even better, multiple obituaries, mobsters, crazy Marines…the works. It was one exciting ride, that’s for sure!
William F. Brown‘s style is great, that traditionally beautiful sort of writing, with a clear and strong voice.
The plot is really smart, and really smartly put together. It has just the right tempo to keep me on the edge of my seat, but at the same time it’s fun, and somehow light-hearted while thrilling too. A strange but memorable mix of emotions came up as I read.
Pete is that sort of guy that you’ll want to marry and have kids with; if he were a real guy, of course. But he’s a character, so second best option is to be sure a worthy woman gets to marry him and have hid kids. I was very touched by Pete’s feelings about losing his wife, Terri. I just went all “Awwww!!” in my head, I couldn’t help it. I was very glad when he met Sandy, because by that time I was already planning to introduce him to single gals myself if he wasn’t going to find someone That’s how into the story I got.
The characters are really solid, lovable and fun, and some of them are detestable, sneaky, conniving little maniacs that you’ll feel like strangling. But in the mids of all the tension, you’ll find yourself chuckling.
My favorite was obviously Pete, but Sandy came in close as second.
The two characters have an awesome chemistry, and Sandy makes the entire ride a lot of fun. She’s that free spirited sort of woman that just makes it all exciting, the good and the bad. Pete needed that, I think; it took a strong, loyal, wisea$$ woman to shock him back into the real world.
I wasn’t sure how it would all end, and I kept thinking the worst might happen. When the ending came, I was happy. I won’t give any spoilers, but for me, it was a beautiful and touching ending. The last scene was just beautiful.
And, yes, as you well know by now, there’s going to be some cover talk. I can’t help myself The cover is really strong, I think. It gives you just the right vibe for the read, and it does the novel justice. That is a great pick for a cover.
I do strongly recommend this to everyone that likes good old mystery, spiced with mobsters, hitmen, conspiracy, fast paced chases and awesome characters.