Monday, May 26, 2008

Another Murder By The Yard Selection

Yes. It is another book by D.R. Meredith. The title as you see is "Tome of Death". It is another in the Megan Clark / Murder By The Yard book club series - the fourth. But it is NOT JUST another one of the books.

Each book in this series seems to offer something else. Yes - it is a murder mystery and yes - megan Clark figures out who the murderer is. But isn't that one of the things the sleuth is supposed to do?

In this book the author does something different. The author tells two stories of murder. The first is in the 1860's and the second is in "present day" Amarillo. And these two stories get tied together with the discovery of the present day murder. Well, the present day murder actually occurred five years ago but it is discovered by Megan Clark. When she discovers the bones from this murder, she also uncovers the mummy of the murder victim from the 1860's. Interspersed with the story of Megan Clark's investigation of the present day murder, is the story of another investigation from the 1860's by Spotted Tongue. Spotted Tongue is a Comanche and his second wife was the one who was murdered.

You may recall that Megan is a reference librarian in Amarillo but she has her professional training in paleopathology. She uses this training in examining the mummified body of the 1860's murder victim. The victim was suspected of being a Cherokee, but Megan was able to positively identify the woman as a white lady. She was also able to provide information that leads to the discovery of the identity of the present day murder victim.

The book follows the inestigations made by Megan (present day) and Spotted Tongue (1860's) concurrently. Each one questions potential witnesses and suspects. There were obvious differences in their investigations. In Spotted Tongue's case, the murder was personal since it was his wife who was murdered. Megan was connected with the murder victim other than through the investigation.

It turns out both the murderer in both cases were connected in someway with the victim. That is no big surprise. In both cases the murderer tries to kill our investigator. And in both cases I think our sleuth's had figured out who the murderer was.

And to top it off, Megan Clark and the book club are able to determine a possible identity for our 1860's murder victim through their research.

I am looking forward to the next book in this series. I wonder what surprise the author will offer? But first I have to read my book club selection for June.


JenningsJunk said...

Wow - this has peaked my interest and I still have the 2nd and 3rd books to read. I started D R Meredith's 2nd book By Hook or By Book. And eventhough the "circle" of characters are the same, the story/mystery is going to be so different from the first book. I'm glad you introduced me to this author and this series :-)

Meadowview Thymes said...

I am ready to start the first book in this series. You make them sound so good...I can't wait to begin! Thanks for your great reviews!

JenningsJunk said...

Wow - I didn't think D R Meredith could top the style/format of Murder in the Past. I just knew that it was going to be my favorite, until....I read this one - Tome of Death. I can honestly say I have 2 top favorites. Both books are so different with the same characters I've grown so comfortable with. And yet the formats are so different and FRESH. I really loved that Tome of Death was set in Palo Duro Canyon. I haven't been there in years, but I loved it then and it's remained a favorite place of mine since.