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The Concrete Vineyard by Cam Lang
Why would anyone want to murder the most respected senior citizen, Niagara-on-the-Lake has ever had?
Retired history professor Edward Mitchell was surely not long for the grave, so why would someone risk life in prison to kill him? Picking up the clues is the reluctant Homicide Chief Detective, Bryan Dee. Thinking he might be out of his depth he is happy to enlist the aid of his friend, Kris Gage. But when Dee reads the deceased’s last entry in his diary, ‘time to take care of K. Gage,’ he becomes torn between investigation and friendship.
As an urban planner, Gage understands real estate and the bureaucracy of planning. Following the money, he soon finds himself in the middle of corrupt developers who seek to take all the charm out of the area. Over two hundred years after the War of 1812, is Niagara-on-the-Lake, once again, on-the-Take?
The Concrete Vineyard is an intriguing and unique whodunit. Packing an intellectual punch, this smart murder/mystery will have you guessing and gripped! If you like great characters, clever plots and intelligent storytelling, then you’ll love this creative and thought-provoking novel.
Buy The Concrete Vineyard today for a thoroughly enjoyable read!
The Concrete Vineyard is a superb, slow-burning cozy, murder/mystery. Drenched in historical memorabilia and modern-day quandaries, this is a ‘who-dun-it’ with substance.
I’ve got to start by saying I applaud the author for cleverly entwining a really great murder/mystery with the world of urban planning corruption and municipal politics. The two things are woven together with extraordinary artistic flair.
The story opens with the murder of Edward Mitchell, by all-accounts a most respected and liked gentleman. Why then was he murdered? Maybe it has something to do with his history-packed mansion? Or could it be he made enemies on the planning council? As the story unfolds, we are given insightful clues to help us puzzle things out. The two main characters are homicide Chief Detective, Bryan Dee, and urban planner Kris Gage. Despite being best friends, the two are very different from one another. One is a burger-eating, can I play golf, reluctant chief, and the other an extremely fit, watch what I eat, care about the environment, workaholic planner. The two of them have different perspectives on the murder, and their sleuthing leads them apart. The story is laced with Canadian history which makes this such an interesting read, as well as an incredible mystery.
This might be Cam Lang’s first novel, but I am confident it won’t be his last! Lang has a great story-telling voice which is both modern and easy-to-read. His scene building is masterful and epigrammatic, his characters are real and interesting. I love Lang’s expressive descriptions and how they bring the story to life. One of my favorites is, ‘under the spread of his gnocchi-fueled buttocks.’ There are lots of fabulously descriptive sentences like this, that say so much with so few words – clever writing in deed. The Concrete Vineyard by Cam Lang is a page-turning, fascinating and inventive mystery you won’t want to miss, and comes highly recommended by Chick Lit Café.
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