Friends, and Other Perishables

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Kirkus Reviews
Debut mystery about a Tulsa p.i. who must unravel an elaborate insurance fraud before an unknown enemy unravels his life. A secret meeting with long-time informant Jimmy Jay, a.k.a. "The Blue Jay," surprisingly turns into a shootout for insurance investigator Carl Jacobs (C.J. to clients), who takes a bullet before shooting Jimmy dead in self-defense. Neither Carl nor his wife Sherry, who works for the insurance company that contracts him, can come up with a plausible motive for Jimmy's apparent ambush. Tulsa police, headed by gruff Detective Fry, are concerned that Carl's close call is related to the killing of Foster, another p.i. whose death is being investigated by hulking, gentle Detective Sweet from nearby Broken Arrow. Both cops are skeptical of Carl's strenuous denials that he's withholding information. During the surveillance of probable insurance-claim faker Dennis Holloway, the body count rises to three when Holloway is killed by an unseen assailant with a .22, the same caliber gun that shot Carl earlier. A handful of leads turns up more corpses and more attempts on Carl's life before a stolen wheelchair puts him on the twisted path to a solution. The prose could be livelier, but Carl's measured first-person narrative is packed with interesting details about investigative work and about his home life with Sherry and their young daughters: a refreshing rarity in the genre.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594142598
  • Publisher: Cengage Gale
  • Publication date: 12/2/2004
  • Pages: 221
  • Product dimensions: 5.84 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.69 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    exciting private investigative tale

    In Tulsa, Oklahoma, private investigator Carl Jacobs meets with his childhood friend, informant Jimmy Jay late at night, but instead of information and friendship, the ¿Blue Jay¿ tries to kill the sleuth. Carl takes a bullet to the shoulder, but kills Jimmy. Afterward, Carl explains to the police that he does not know why a man who slept in his home and knew his wife and two daughters would try to kill him.--- The next day Carl learns that another private investigator was killed last week by the weapon that Jimmy used on him. Other attempts on Carl¿s life follow, but this time by a professional hit man. As Carl investigates a couple of cases for Underhill Insurance, where his wife is employed, he begins to uncover a multi million dollar insurance scam in which killing those making inquiries into claims is acceptable and if that proves too tough go after their loved ones.--- This exciting private investigative tale contains a strong mystery, but what makes it unique is that Carl is a cross between an urban noir hero and a househusband/doting father. Besides being shot (remarkable recovery aside), he makes breakfast for his three beloved females. FRIENDS AND OTHER PERISHABLES is a solid cozy starring a likable champion who handles being shot at and wounded with aplomb, but goes a bit crazy when his family comes under attack.--- Harriet Klausner

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