Reviewed by Charlayne Elizabeth Denney
Member of the Paranormal Romance Guild Review Team
Eden Price had messed up. It was bad enough, at age 18, that she missed the graduation trip with her friends, the judge sent her to a small town to live with her grandmother and she had to work at the Pizza Palace. Nothing to do there but work and go home to her grandmother and the thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle on the card table.
It wasn’t that she was a bad girl, she wasn’t. But she was in Halstead for the summer and she was trying to make the best of it. Right up until she met Lucas Walls. He was cute, sitting with friends in a booth at the pizza restaurant, and he was the one who wore the spaghetti dinner that spilled all over his new shoes when she tripped and fell with the food. He berated her and left with his friends.
And that’s when the trouble started. She meets the retired doctor and his wife and he gives her a twenty dollar bill with instructions to read it later. Her boss is understanding and calls Lucas’s parents, barring him from the restaurant. Then she finds out they live next door to her grandmother.
The doctor goes missing, his wife is convinced he was kidnapped. That was just a sad thought until Eden sees Lucas carry a big bag and put it in the trunk of his Mustang and she saw it move. Missing Doctor plus Lucas’s bag moving had to equal kidnapping. She calls 911.
The story rolls from there, with Eden trying to help the doctor’s wife find him, teaming up with Lucas when it’s proven he’s not the kidnapper. The town drunk, the woman who ran the now-closed hospital, the town mayor, and a kitten Lucas named Velma all figure into the unfolding plot of a good mystery.
I thought I had figured it up right until Eden announced she knew what happened. I’m not going to spill the beans here but that was a possibility I hadn’t even thought of as I read. A good thing to happen when reading mysteries, the best ones never show their hand early.
I enjoyed this book. It’s YA so there’s not any sex or drugs in it, and teens will like it. I found myself wanting to share it with my teen granddaughter.
If you’re looking for an easy read with one heck of a plot twist, this is the book for you. Bill Bush has crafted a good, well-told mystery and I’m actually looking forward to the second Halstead Mystery.