A Crushing Death by F. M. Meredith

Every good detective story has to begin with a dead body and this book follows that rule when a popular middle school teacher is found under a pile of rocks under a pier. This is the latest book in a series about the Rock Bluff P.D., its Chief of Police, Chandra Taylor, a police family, Doug and Stacey Milligan and their two children, Beth and Davey. They all reside in a small fictional town, North of San Luis Obispo with an understaffed police force.

Meredith is a good storyteller. The plot goes through a reasonable setup and increases in intensity, engaging the reader in the buildup at the end. It was complicated enough to keep my interest and exciting at the end. The characters are drawn clearly, although one-dimensional. It reminded me of the ancient TV police drama, Dragnet—Nothin’ but the facts, Mam. This novel also presents a sequence of events in dry progression that feels like an authentic police detection process.

I can recommend this novel as a quick read and entertaining. No negative criticism intended, the author does seem obsessed with every character’s clothing.

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