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Redemption Lake

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Tucson, Arizona – Eighteen-year-old Matt Garrison is harboring two terrible secrets: his involvement in the drowning death of his 12-year-old cousin, and a night of drunken sex with his best friend’s mother, Crystal, whom he finds dead in a bathtub of blood. Guilt forces Matt to act on impulse and hide his involvement with Crystal. Detective Winston Radhauser knows Matt is Tucson, Arizona – Eighteen-year-old Matt Garrison is harboring two terrible secrets: his involvement in the drowning death of his 12-year-old cousin, and a night of drunken sex with his best friend’s mother, Crystal, whom he finds dead in a bathtub of blood. Guilt forces Matt to act on impulse and hide his involvement with Crystal. Detective Winston Radhauser knows Matt is hiding something. But as the investigation progresses, Radhauser’s attention is focused on Matt’s father. Matt’s world closes in when his father is arrested for Crystal’s murder, and Travis breaks off their friendship. Despite his father’s guilty plea, Matt knows his dad is innocent and only trying to protect his son. Devastated and bent on self-destruction, Matt heads for the lake where his cousin died—the only place he believes can truly free him. Are some secrets better left buried?


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Tucson, Arizona – Eighteen-year-old Matt Garrison is harboring two terrible secrets: his involvement in the drowning death of his 12-year-old cousin, and a night of drunken sex with his best friend’s mother, Crystal, whom he finds dead in a bathtub of blood. Guilt forces Matt to act on impulse and hide his involvement with Crystal. Detective Winston Radhauser knows Matt is Tucson, Arizona – Eighteen-year-old Matt Garrison is harboring two terrible secrets: his involvement in the drowning death of his 12-year-old cousin, and a night of drunken sex with his best friend’s mother, Crystal, whom he finds dead in a bathtub of blood. Guilt forces Matt to act on impulse and hide his involvement with Crystal. Detective Winston Radhauser knows Matt is hiding something. But as the investigation progresses, Radhauser’s attention is focused on Matt’s father. Matt’s world closes in when his father is arrested for Crystal’s murder, and Travis breaks off their friendship. Despite his father’s guilty plea, Matt knows his dad is innocent and only trying to protect his son. Devastated and bent on self-destruction, Matt heads for the lake where his cousin died—the only place he believes can truly free him. Are some secrets better left buried?

30 review for Redemption Lake

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    I'm not a big fan of mystery/thrillers, but this book held my attention from the first page to the last. This novel had several twists and turns throughout. The reader could really feel the anguish and torment the main character was experiencing. Also, the author used such descriptive language for the setting of Tuscon and the Arizona desert that one could really visualize the colors and plants. I recommend this book for an easy and fast read. I also liked Clayton-Goldner's last book, A Bend in I'm not a big fan of mystery/thrillers, but this book held my attention from the first page to the last. This novel had several twists and turns throughout. The reader could really feel the anguish and torment the main character was experiencing. Also, the author used such descriptive language for the setting of Tuscon and the Arizona desert that one could really visualize the colors and plants. I recommend this book for an easy and fast read. I also liked Clayton-Goldner's last book, A Bend in the Willow.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rich

    My first book by this author that I have read. I just could not buy into this story. I thought the dialogue was ok and I felt meah towards all the characters in the story . That is never a good sign lol. The pace was on and off for this story. I always felt this was a lifetime movie trying to be a serious thriller-I could not shake that feeling, for me it felt cheesy at times. The end was ok. I would say not to give this book a spin

  3. 5 out of 5

    Linda Rainey

    I finished Redemption Lake with tears flowing with the depiction of the desert southwest leaving me homesick. Heart-wrenching suspense grabs at your throat and propels you through this book at a breakneck pace. Vivid prose and characters paint a picture of the life of a teenager in stress. Wow, what an ending, totally unexpected. I give this book 5 stars and wish it could be more.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Joan R. Craven

    I absolutely LOVED THIS BOOK!!! I thought A Bend in the Willow was really good, but Susan Clayton- Goldner hit this one out of the ballpark!!! Susan's writing does not waste a single paragraph with filler sentences. She keeps her stories moving and interesting! This book never slowed down for one minute. Unfortunately, I have lost several hours of sleep this week. I found myself getting back up after going to bed because I wanted to know what was happening next! I finished the book this afternoo I absolutely LOVED THIS BOOK!!! I thought A Bend in the Willow was really good, but Susan Clayton- Goldner hit this one out of the ballpark!!! Susan's writing does not waste a single paragraph with filler sentences. She keeps her stories moving and interesting! This book never slowed down for one minute. Unfortunately, I have lost several hours of sleep this week. I found myself getting back up after going to bed because I wanted to know what was happening next! I finished the book this afternoon and cannot wait until Susan publishes Book 2 in the series....I will certainly be reading it. The main character is Matt Garrison who cannot turn loose and forgive himself because his 12 year old cousin drowned while they were diving off cliffs. Matt and his best friend Travis made it home safely, but his cousin didn't. While Travis is at a school dance, Matt stops by and visits with his mother Crystal. Matt falls asleep, but upon waking up finds Crystal dead in the bath tub. You will never figure out all the twists and turns until the end!!! Enjoy!! I sure did!!!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Louise Pledge

    First, let me start off by saying how excellent the writing was. As the wife, daughter and granddaughter of writers (and a national winner, myself), I tend to be pretty critical. So it does say something that I was very impressed! Then there was the great plot: I started reading last night, intending just to get a good feel for it, but couldn't put it down until I was finished! It isn't often enough that I read a book that envelops me like this one did. Besides the sometimes emotional story that First, let me start off by saying how excellent the writing was. As the wife, daughter and granddaughter of writers (and a national winner, myself), I tend to be pretty critical. So it does say something that I was very impressed! Then there was the great plot: I started reading last night, intending just to get a good feel for it, but couldn't put it down until I was finished! It isn't often enough that I read a book that envelops me like this one did. Besides the sometimes emotional story that will draw you in, there are a few lessons to be learned along the way about redemption, too. Second book I've read by this author but, certainly, not the last!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ruth Horner

    Thoroughly enjoyed this book by Susan Clayton-Goldner. She is an excellent writer of mysteries, keeps you reading past time. Enjoyed this one as much as A Bend in the Willow. Not too technical but does enough research to make it interesting until the last word. Susan sent me this book free for my honest opinion and review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Diana

    I really enjoyed reading this book. Redemption lake is a couple of grades above Susan's previous book, I think that her writing skills are improving by leaps and bounds. This book hooked me in within the first couple of pages and the "who dun it" story just kept me turning those pages (Well, swiping my e Reader anyway). The main character is an engaging personality and "Seeing" inside his head as the story unfolded was fascinating. I found myself all over the yard with this one. One minute rooting I really enjoyed reading this book. Redemption lake is a couple of grades above Susan's previous book, I think that her writing skills are improving by leaps and bounds. This book hooked me in within the first couple of pages and the "who dun it" story just kept me turning those pages (Well, swiping my e Reader anyway). The main character is an engaging personality and "Seeing" inside his head as the story unfolded was fascinating. I found myself all over the yard with this one. One minute rooting for him, the next thinking "What a dumb move" The story is very interesting, exciting and emotional. I have never thought about visiting any of the desert states before but after reading this book with the beautiful descriptions of the area, I have started thinking about going to see for myself. A great book, definitely worth reading.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Warren

    Matthew Garrison woke in his best friend's mother's bed after she refused to let him drive home drunk. He rushes to the bathroom to find a puddle of blood on the floor. Crystal, Travis' mother, is lying in the tub full of bloody water. Blood still oozes from the gash in her neck. Matthew's father is arrested for committing the murder, but is he guilty, or did he confess to protect Matthew? Redemption Lake is a fast paced story full of conflict and emotion. The characters are so real, so dramatic Matthew Garrison woke in his best friend's mother's bed after she refused to let him drive home drunk. He rushes to the bathroom to find a puddle of blood on the floor. Crystal, Travis' mother, is lying in the tub full of bloody water. Blood still oozes from the gash in her neck. Matthew's father is arrested for committing the murder, but is he guilty, or did he confess to protect Matthew? Redemption Lake is a fast paced story full of conflict and emotion. The characters are so real, so dramatic, they pull the reader into the story from page one. This is one of the best, most suspenseful books I have read in a long time. It definitely has a place on my personal bookshelf and I heartily recommend it.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Elliott

    I believe this author could write anything. Mysteries have always intrigued me and Redemption Lake (RL)did not disappoint. The reader cannot help feeling good while reading and feels almost "healed" of any life issues by the end of the story. I had no idea where the story was going, i.e. I could not have guessed the outcome, which to me is the epitome of writing a good mystery. I cannot wait for S C-G's next release. Sadly, her books are so compelling that I cannot put them down and the exciteme I believe this author could write anything. Mysteries have always intrigued me and Redemption Lake (RL)did not disappoint. The reader cannot help feeling good while reading and feels almost "healed" of any life issues by the end of the story. I had no idea where the story was going, i.e. I could not have guessed the outcome, which to me is the epitome of writing a good mystery. I cannot wait for S C-G's next release. Sadly, her books are so compelling that I cannot put them down and the excitement of being lost in the story only lasts for a day or two and the few days afterwards when I am wondering what the characters are doing. Hopefully a new book will be on the shelves soon. If I had not read a Bend in the Willow, I would have said RL is the best book I have ever read.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    Matt and Travis have been best friends for years. Crystal was like a second mother to Matt. Radhauser is a very special person. He has suffered with the loss of his family. When he starts working Crystal's case it brings back memory's. The characters in this book are all very special people. This book is hard to stop reading. The author will have you on the edge of your seat waiting to see what happens next. This book deserves a higher rating than a five star review. I had the honor to review th Matt and Travis have been best friends for years. Crystal was like a second mother to Matt. Radhauser is a very special person. He has suffered with the loss of his family. When he starts working Crystal's case it brings back memory's. The characters in this book are all very special people. This book is hard to stop reading. The author will have you on the edge of your seat waiting to see what happens next. This book deserves a higher rating than a five star review. I had the honor to review this book for the author for a honest review. The review is my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Anne Fox

    I found this a well-written and very engaging book! Plenty of twists and turns to entertain the avid mystery reader, this one will keep you guessing, trying to figure out who done it. Be prepared: once you cross the 50% mark, you just might want to stay up a few more hours to get to the end. A hint, but not a spoiler: the story swirls around the various loves and realities in a young man's life: the love for a friend, the love for a family not his own, the love for his own, and a love for the tr I found this a well-written and very engaging book! Plenty of twists and turns to entertain the avid mystery reader, this one will keep you guessing, trying to figure out who done it. Be prepared: once you cross the 50% mark, you just might want to stay up a few more hours to get to the end. A hint, but not a spoiler: the story swirls around the various loves and realities in a young man's life: the love for a friend, the love for a family not his own, the love for his own, and a love for the truth he can't leave hidden—neither his truth nor the truth surrounding the death of his best friend's mother. Get this book, hold onto your hat, and don't look back until you're done. You'll be glad you did!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Karin

    I’d never read a who-dun-it like this before! I always enjoy coming of age stories and this is no exception. I thought all the characters were likeable or at least I could sympathize with them all. This is a real page turner. I found myself ignoring other books even those that were approaching their due date. I stayed up too late a few nights reading this because I was so interested in it’s denouement. I will probably read another WR mystery if it is as good as this.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Randy Troyer

    I am quite a fan of a good mystery. Whether it be Colonel Mustard in the kitchen with a candlestick or Sherlock Holmes proclaiming "Elementary, my dear Watson" I am always wondering "whodunnit"? Having the good luck to be born at the advent of television I grew up with Perry Mason, Columbo, and Quincy. Heck, even my favorite episodes of M*A*S*H include "The Rooster Crowed at Midnight" and Hawkeye putting forth his rendition of Hercule Poirot, Holmes, and Inspector Clouseau in catching the camp t I am quite a fan of a good mystery. Whether it be Colonel Mustard in the kitchen with a candlestick or Sherlock Holmes proclaiming "Elementary, my dear Watson" I am always wondering "whodunnit"? Having the good luck to be born at the advent of television I grew up with Perry Mason, Columbo, and Quincy. Heck, even my favorite episodes of M*A*S*H include "The Rooster Crowed at Midnight" and Hawkeye putting forth his rendition of Hercule Poirot, Holmes, and Inspector Clouseau in catching the camp thief Ho Jon "blue-handed". As you see, I am indeed a fan of a mystery. Having read this author's book "A Bend in the Willow" and being pleasantly surprised by what I deemed "character-driven-fiction" I was unsure what to expect in "Redemption Lake", her latest work. All I can say is, I want more! I truly enjoyed the character development in "Willow" and was not left wanting here. A slow yet steady pace helps develop and build the characters. The story involves young adults discovering who they are and their parents attempting to hide behind walls of guilt and deception built so strongly not a single one of them is certain "whodunnit". As you read the story you are let into the heads and hearts of two friends who are as close (if not closer) than brothers. One of them harboring a deep sense of guilt and trying to deal with it as he experiences his parent's divorce and subsequent marriage of his mother to another man. The teenage angst is strong and driven faster than a Maserati doing 185 in a school zone. After "Willow" I knew Clayton-Goldner could weave a great story and put the reader right in the middle of it. Again, she did not disappoint with "Redemption Lake". Having grown up in the western half of the United States I was impressed by the detail of experience she brought in describing a night in the desert southwest of Arizona. From the sounds and smells to the moonlight and saguaro cactus. She puts you there. I think it is because of this the reader becomes even more drawn into the story and the book becomes harder and harder to put down. I understand "Redemption Lake" is to be the first in a series following the arc of the detective investigating the crime(?) in this story. Clayton-Goldner portrays this investigator as "hard-boiled" but his shell definitely has a few cracks as he deals with a significant loss of his own. If this is the case I can say, unequivocally, I can't wait for the next story! You may notice, I don't get into a lot of the story line in my review. I feel if I tell you this is a mystery involving character A who may have robbed character B while character C investigates I am not writing a review, I am writing a book report. You'll never find spoilers in my review and you'll never see a great deal about any one part of the story, or, for that matter, a whole lot about the story at all. That's what you read the book for, not the review. Bottom line: Susan Clayton-Goldner delivers another entertaining novel, this time a mystery that is NOT a plodding easy to determine "whodunnit". Rather, it is a character driven, fully developed, interesting story of teenage trouble, adult trouble, just a lot of trouble and it will keep you guessing right up to the end. Isn't that a perfect mystery? I was given an advance copy of the book for my honest review of the work. All opinions expressed herein are my own.

  14. 5 out of 5

    E.P.

    It's 1989, and Matt Garrison is getting ready to graduate high school and leave for college like any other 18-year-old. Except that he isn't your typical 18-year-old: he's still haunted six years later by the drowning death of his cousin. And then one night he finds himself in the bed of his best friend's mother Crystal, and then a couple hours later finds her dead body in the bathtub. Was it suicide because of what she'd done with him? Or was she murdered by someone close to both of them? "Redem It's 1989, and Matt Garrison is getting ready to graduate high school and leave for college like any other 18-year-old. Except that he isn't your typical 18-year-old: he's still haunted six years later by the drowning death of his cousin. And then one night he finds himself in the bed of his best friend's mother Crystal, and then a couple hours later finds her dead body in the bathtub. Was it suicide because of what she'd done with him? Or was she murdered by someone close to both of them? "Redemption Lake" is a murder mystery and has all the twists and turns you'd expect from the genre, as Matt tries to cover up his presence at the house the night of the murder, and then discover who actually killed Crystal in the face of confusion and planted evidence. Both he and the police come up with one suspect after another, including Matt himself, only to discard them as fresh and surprising evidence keeps coming to light. At the same time, this isn't your typical murder mystery. It's at least as much an exploration of guilt, redemption, and what it's like to be 18, when you're not really a child any more but not quite an adult either. Matt is capable of acting like an adult at times, but he also acts out impulsively in the face of stress, and bursts out like a child when the "real" adults around him let him down. His story is told in the third person, but with simple, natural language that fits a teenage boy without sounding stylized. So while the plot is that of a detective story, the prose style is closer to that of a certain type of literary fiction, the kind that seeks not to stand between the reader and the characters, but to put the reader directly into the characters' thoughts and feelings. The result is an affecting immediacy that brings home Matt's adolescent doubts and struggles, placing them front and center in the story. While Matt's teenage experience of loss of childhood is at the center of the story, there's also a separate but related theme of parents who lose childhood in a different way: through the loss of a child. Detective Radhauser, the main secondary character in the book, is facing the anniversary of the death of his son, and he encounters another character who has also lost a child. All of them, like Matt himself, have to come to terms with what has happened and their own inadvertent culpability in the death of the person they would least want to harm. It is tragic, but the tragedy is balanced by the redemption promised in the title: lives may end, but life goes on. "Redemption Lake" is a different kind of mystery novel, but one well worth reading for anyone seeking something a little more thoughtful than ordinary genre fare. My thanks to the author for providing a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

  15. 4 out of 5

    John Karam

    First I want to say that the author provided me with a review copy. I don't know her. She found a review of mine on Amazon and asked me to do a review of her last novel. I guess she liked the review I did so she asked me to review this one as well. I do enjoy a good mystery! This has it all. The character who is caught up in the events and struggles with what to do. Another who makes choices in order to protect someone else. And a series of suspects that come and go, depending on the quality of t First I want to say that the author provided me with a review copy. I don't know her. She found a review of mine on Amazon and asked me to do a review of her last novel. I guess she liked the review I did so she asked me to review this one as well. I do enjoy a good mystery! This has it all. The character who is caught up in the events and struggles with what to do. Another who makes choices in order to protect someone else. And a series of suspects that come and go, depending on the quality of their alibi. Finally, there is the dogged police detective who senses when someone is lying or not and has an innate ability to ferret out the truth from the evidence and logic. This book kept me going until the end. There was evidence as to who the killer was or, at least, evidence as to who it wasn't. I kept trying to figure it out as I went and had to give up and read to the end to find out who, what, why, and how. One thing about Susan Clayton-Goldner's novels is that she spends time introducing her characters, their foibles, and their feelings. Sometimes this slows the novel down a bit but it is usually very important to the story. Her characters come to life on the page with all their good and bad qualities exposed for the reader to see. If you like mysteries or even good character-driven plots, I know you will enjoy Redemption Lake.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Arlene Ross

    I was given a free ebook copy of this book for an honest review. Wow, what a great book. I could not put it down as the characters were well developed and the plot was strong and full of twists and turns. There are also many emotions revealed in the story which were so well described, I could feel Matt being so sad and so confused at times. This is the second book I have reviewed for Susan and both were excelent, she is truly a gifted writer and I highly recommend this novel for your reading ple I was given a free ebook copy of this book for an honest review. Wow, what a great book. I could not put it down as the characters were well developed and the plot was strong and full of twists and turns. There are also many emotions revealed in the story which were so well described, I could feel Matt being so sad and so confused at times. This is the second book I have reviewed for Susan and both were excelent, she is truly a gifted writer and I highly recommend this novel for your reading pleasure.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Lj Bousquet

    Goldner again shows us her ever-expanding repertoire, this time with a page-turning mystery. Redemption Lake has the necessary conflicts and twists to keep a reader engaged and delivers the surprise in its conclusion. Goldner also introduces Detective Radhauser, a cop with a tragic past. Perhaps a series in his future? I'd like to see more of him. Young men should easily relate to the protagonist, Matt. Goldner again shows us her ever-expanding repertoire, this time with a page-turning mystery. Redemption Lake has the necessary conflicts and twists to keep a reader engaged and delivers the surprise in its conclusion. Goldner also introduces Detective Radhauser, a cop with a tragic past. Perhaps a series in his future? I'd like to see more of him. Young men should easily relate to the protagonist, Matt.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sue Bailey

    I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This was a very good book! I love good mysteries and this is definitely at the top of my list. It remained a mystery to me until the very end as to “whodunit”. I enjoyed getting to “know” Matt and how he saw things from his perspective. But every few chapters, I liked that the author brought in another characters point of view. I am looking forward to Book 2 in this series.

  19. 4 out of 5

    M.K. Williams

    What a great mystery. There were several twists and turns; at one point I thought that I knew for sure who committed the crime only to realize in the next chapter that I had the case all wrong. This was a great story and the way that the clues were revealed were perfect. Well done!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Skye Andrews

    don't you hate it when you are halfway through a book and know who the killer is before it is revealed? This is not one of those books, It kept me in suspense the whole way through. I would like to hope Matt takes up a career as a detective in a future story. a must for any TBR list don't you hate it when you are halfway through a book and know who the killer is before it is revealed? This is not one of those books, It kept me in suspense the whole way through. I would like to hope Matt takes up a career as a detective in a future story. a must for any TBR list

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lynda Kelly

    A new author and new series for me and it is super. It was a free download in 2020 and has idled on my Kindle ever since. I saw it pop up in another freebie email this week and again it caught my eye so I brought it to the front of my list at long last. So pleased I did. I really liked young Matt and the super friendship he has with Travis and also his sister, considering their age-gap as well !! We learned a little about Wind but considering the books are named for him, we didn't see as much of A new author and new series for me and it is super. It was a free download in 2020 and has idled on my Kindle ever since. I saw it pop up in another freebie email this week and again it caught my eye so I brought it to the front of my list at long last. So pleased I did. I really liked young Matt and the super friendship he has with Travis and also his sister, considering their age-gap as well !! We learned a little about Wind but considering the books are named for him, we didn't see as much of him as I'd have expected. Though I see there are a lot more stories in the series to come yet......he certainly does a really thorough job in his investigations which impressed me. I loved the way she writes with plenty of dialogue, which I much prefer. I get bogged down in books that are too descriptive-they just end up boring me. This line was a super one I highlighted, "The kitchen smelled like buttery grilled bread, basil and grief...." There weren't tons of errors, either. She wrote Country and not County Medical Examiner just once and then we had Luminal and not Luminol. She also did that American thing where they write shined not shone and leaped not leapt but that was it. Impressive. It would be nice if we revisit characters from this story in other books but I'm doubting we will, aside from Radhauser himself.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Linda Willer

    I received an advanced readers copy of this book directly from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! I understand this will be the first book in a trilogy and I am looking forward to the next book. I suspect that after the third book is finished, we, the fans, will be asking for more; will not be happy with only three books. Detective/suspense/thrillers are my genre. The characters are well developed over the whole book; meaning that you do not find out about the characters' pa I received an advanced readers copy of this book directly from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! I understand this will be the first book in a trilogy and I am looking forward to the next book. I suspect that after the third book is finished, we, the fans, will be asking for more; will not be happy with only three books. Detective/suspense/thrillers are my genre. The characters are well developed over the whole book; meaning that you do not find out about the characters' pasts, all at one time. This allows an empathy with each character and you do not immediately like or hate a character. I did not fully guess "who done it." I had three firm suspects along the way and a few maybe's. But, until the the end, I was kept guessing through the twists and turns. Can't wait to go on the next adventure with Detective Radhauser. Five stars for another well written book where each scene is fully vivid; each fully 3D. Many will read this book in one sitting; unfortunately because of my volunteer work, I could not, but read into the night after I hit 75% on my kindle!!!!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Nerdy Dirty & Flirty

    ☆☆☆☆ ~Lindsey Some things are better left in the dark but what happens when your past comes back to face you full on and there is nowhere to hide and you must face it. There is nothing Matt would love more than for his past to stay in the past but an old ghost has a way of coming back and he is about to learn that sometimes it's better to face them head on especially when there is nowhere else to go. This was a very well written story you could tell the author put a lot of time and emotions in thi ☆☆☆☆ ~Lindsey Some things are better left in the dark but what happens when your past comes back to face you full on and there is nowhere to hide and you must face it. There is nothing Matt would love more than for his past to stay in the past but an old ghost has a way of coming back and he is about to learn that sometimes it's better to face them head on especially when there is nowhere else to go. This was a very well written story you could tell the author put a lot of time and emotions in this book. This was a very well written story with great characters, and a plot that holds the reader to the story. I will not lie it took me awhile to get into the book but I’m glad I stuck with it, because I ended up really enjoying it. This is a great mystery story that will suck you in on its rollercoaster of twist and turns and leave you asking what just happen. I’m glad I got to enjoy this story and can’t wait to see what is next for Ms.Susan, because if this is what to be expected then I will not be disappointed.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    I have been enjoying Clayton-Goldner’s Det. Radhauser series so much I decided to go back to the first book and see how it all started. Once again, I was captivated. We don’t get as much Radhauser in this one as in the later books, but it’s a fascinating story. Things are going badly for 18-year-old high school senior Matt Garrison. When he does something stupid and embarrassing at his mother’s wedding to his new stepfather, he seeks comfort from his friend Travis, but Travis isn’t home. Instea I have been enjoying Clayton-Goldner’s Det. Radhauser series so much I decided to go back to the first book and see how it all started. Once again, I was captivated. We don’t get as much Radhauser in this one as in the later books, but it’s a fascinating story. Things are going badly for 18-year-old high school senior Matt Garrison. When he does something stupid and embarrassing at his mother’s wedding to his new stepfather, he seeks comfort from his friend Travis, but Travis isn’t home. Instead his mother Crystal invites him in, offers him beer and seduces him. Too drunk to go home, he falls asleep in her bed and awakes hours later to find her gruesomely murdered. People are going to think he did it! He didn’t, but who did? And so the mystery begins, with plenty of lies, false turns, and red herrings until we finally learn who really did it. By then, the reader has abandoned work and chores to read this book all the way to the end.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jay Williams

    A Gut-Wrenching Story This book mixes a police procedural with a coming of age story as tormented young man deals with the fallout of finding his best friend 's mother dead after drinking and making out with her. The murder is hard to solve, and many relationships are called into question as the investigation progresses. Lots of emotion and a great cast of realistic characters. A Gut-Wrenching Story This book mixes a police procedural with a coming of age story as tormented young man deals with the fallout of finding his best friend 's mother dead after drinking and making out with her. The murder is hard to solve, and many relationships are called into question as the investigation progresses. Lots of emotion and a great cast of realistic characters.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Terry McGhee

    Evidence tampering Appearance versus reality is the constant battle the reader faced in this excellently written mystery story. Balance of all the plot innuendos was creative and kept reader interest. All suspects appear guilty but reader is for great ending. I recommend any books by the author based on her understanding of human interactions.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ted Tayler

    "Brilliant" I've waited all year to read a book this good. I couldn't put it down. The police procedural element was detailed and flawless. The personal relationships between Matt, and Travis, Matt and his parents, Radhauser and Gracie; I could go on. Each was accurately observed and expressed. This writer can certainly tell a great story. Dive in and enjoy. Highly recommended. "Brilliant" I've waited all year to read a book this good. I couldn't put it down. The police procedural element was detailed and flawless. The personal relationships between Matt, and Travis, Matt and his parents, Radhauser and Gracie; I could go on. Each was accurately observed and expressed. This writer can certainly tell a great story. Dive in and enjoy. Highly recommended.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Helen E. Haupt

    A great read!! Seldom have I read such a magnificently crafted book. The people written about were so real to me that I could literally feel their emotions. I've discovered a new favorite author. A great read!! Seldom have I read such a magnificently crafted book. The people written about were so real to me that I could literally feel their emotions. I've discovered a new favorite author.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Elaine Szady

    Excellent book Some books you read, anxious for the ending and an end to the suspense. Others, you enjoy every page. This book is both. The author has a way of making you feel the characters' feelings. I look forward to reading more of her books. Excellent book Some books you read, anxious for the ending and an end to the suspense. Others, you enjoy every page. This book is both. The author has a way of making you feel the characters' feelings. I look forward to reading more of her books.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Barb VanderWel

    I love this & I can't wait for more. I will be also leaving a review on Goodreads @ Amazon. And letting everyone know about it. So i gave it a 5 Stars. I love this & I can't wait for more. I will be also leaving a review on Goodreads @ Amazon. And letting everyone know about it. So i gave it a 5 Stars.

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