A technical writer/editor for the U.S. Postal Service, Jeff Crook is also the author of several fantasy books in a series called Dragonlance. He lives in Mississippi with his wife and two sons and The Sleeping and the Dead is his first mystery.
A Brief Summary:
Jackie Lyons is a former vice detective with the Memphis Police Department who is trying to put her life back together: her husband has sent divorce papers, she’s broke, and needs a place to live. But a failed marriage, unemployment, and most recently a fire in her apartment aren’t her only problems: she also sees ghosts.
Since Jackie left the force, she’s been making ends meet by photographing crime scenes for her old friends on the force, and for the occasional collector. When she is called to the murder scene of the Playhouse Killer’s latest victim, she starts seeing crime scenes from a different perspective– her new camera captures images of ghosts. As her new camera brings her occasional ghostly visitors into sharper relief, it also points her toward clues the ex-detective in her won’t let go: did the man she has just started dating kill his wife? Is the Playhouse Killer someone she knows?
As Jackie works to separate natural from supernatural, friend from foe, and light from dark, the spirit world and her own difficult past become the only things she can depend on to solve the case.
Jeff Crook demonstrates the depth of his writing talent in this impressive supernatural serial killer debut…A fun read!
At Mystery Tribune, we like the authors who can play with the words; the ones who use the words beautifully, just like a musical instrument to create impressive piece of art. You don’t have to write literary novels to do that: Jeff Crook is a good example of a supernatural mystery novelist who has done so with his atmospheric and memorable debut.
The main protagonist, Jackie, is a fascinating, yet vulgar female character and we liked the fact that the author created a Noir-Type atmosphere in his book surrounding Jackie and her past. The story is fast-paced, and the fans of serial killer novels will appreciate the appropriate dose of who-dunit and old fashioned thriller mixed with supernatural themes.
Our Rating: 4.0