Starting with a prologue that is told in a killer’s point of view, C.A. Newsome has added an interesting twist to the cozy mystery genre with the inset. While ostensibly the story is focused on a group of regulars at a dog park, the story works on several different levels that may be disconcerting for some readers.
Firstly, the dogs: I am a huge fan of do-related stories, and the particular insets of the many dogs and their associated personalities, as well as their relationships and correlations to their owners is cleverly done. There are several characters introduced in the story, and it does make it a bit more difficult to narrow down the more important players from the group. What is very well done is the cold, calculating and distinctly written and narrated point of view insets from the murderer him (or her) self. Kudos to the author for the stylistic switch: and to the narration by Jane Boyer in which she imbues a harder and more calculating quality to the voicing of those sections. It is a quality that is often overlooked in audiobook narration, particular intention behind a character’s narration and tone, and she excelled at this story.
But back to the story itself: I really did enjoy this, even with the lack of a comeuppance for the murderer, or even a sense that you are certain the murderer has been named. Possibly muddled by the many characters, there was a sense that the second book will not only provide the reason for this murder, and fully explain the intentions of the culprit. In this, the mystery portion of the story has the potential to disappoint some readers who want to have a final wrap up that is defined and obvious, but I particularly appreciated the openness and quality of the stylistic differences that made this story unlike any I have previously encountered.
Stars: Overall 4 Narration 5 Story 3.5
I own this book in two forms, I purchased a Kindle copy, and I was fortunate to win the AudioBook version of the story. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Title: A Shot in the Bark
Author: C.A. Newsome
Genre: Contemporary Mystery
Narrator: Jane Boyer
Published by: Self-Produced
Audio Length: 7 Hours: 42 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ AllRomance ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo
Artist Lia Anderson likes to start each day with a trip to the Mount Airy Dog Park with her two rescues. Then her boyfriend's body turns up, bringing the attention of Detective Peter Dourson. Lia struggles with grief and her growing attraction to the handsome detective while Dourson suspects all is not as it seems with the tightly knit group of park regulars. As Dourson's investigation uncovers well-kept secrets, a killer lurks in the guise of a friend.