Leisenring No. 1

By

Leisenring, Pennsylvania at the turn of the 20th century is a small coal-mining town like many others scattered across the country, but author Jim Oglethorpe complicates the usual day-to-day activities of his cast of characters by having a burned human skull turn up one day in a coke oven. In a familiar but well-done progression of plot developments, Oglethorpe moves his mystery story from grisly discovery to dogged investigation to nefarious cover-up, and his main character, former cop Joe Zajac, is a well-drawn and immediately likable figure to accompany the reader through the steadily-thickening storylines.

The book’s dialog can be a bit wooden, and the murder plot itself has a fairly sizable logistical hole that neither Zajac nor Oglethorpe appear to notice. But the Western Pennsylvania of the coal baron era is memorably evoked.

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12 of the best stories selected from the 2012 Historical Novel Society Short Story Award

Details

Indie

Publisher

Published

Genre
,

Period

Century

Price
(US) $8.99

ISBN
(US) 9780988729209

Format
Paperback

Pages
240

Review

Reviewed by