Sleuthing Prayer

As a cozy mystery author, I hesitated to review a mystery in the same niche genre for Crash Books. After all, might I be biased? I assure you, dear reader, an objective assessment of As a Shield (Crosslink Publishing, 2016) by the writer couple team of Danny and Wanda Pelfrey.

Our bookseller, former pastor and current police chaplain-cum-tag along cop, Davis Morgan does it all. The 45 year-old has a quiet cerebral day job like Indiana Jones, but moonlights in a swashbuckling role off hours and weekends, helping a local cop get the bad guys. We never know why, but it provides an amateur sleuth raw material.

Lost gold, a Cherokee legend, bad dudes, a civil war history lesson and attempted murder figure prominently in this mystery. Oh, and add a wedding, real-estate purchase and a 17 year-old age gap relationship, plus prayer and Bible quotes. Bible quotes! Yes, that's right, and there's more, the narrator hears people's prayers. Talk about total omniscience!

Other than a few minor irritations, e.g., dialogue supplying information instead of the narrator and tepid conflict and zero edge, the book is an engaging read. The description of the Georgia back country makes an interesting travelogue. I would have liked a bigger bang at the end, but the writers chose a more whodunit climax which will satisfy most readers.

I give it three stars on five.


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