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July 31, 2012

Good Mystery: Revenge

Revenge: A Travis Mays Novel by Mark Young
paperback, 361 pages
Published February 2011 by Mark Young
ISBN13: 9780983266310
Read July 2012
Goodreads, Amazon 

I continue to delve into the backlog that is my TBR pile. I received a free copy of Revenge for review last October. I was quite intrigued by the plot and though I knew if would be a while before I got to it, I didn't think it would be this long. I did loan the book to my mom and she loved it. She keeps mentioning it and wondering if there's any more in this series.

I enjoyed Revenge. It was a good mystery. Travis has retired from law enforcement when an informant (whom he happened to fall in love with) is killed in the midst of an operation to get him information on an organized crime ring. The guilt, and fallout of the botched investigation, led Travis to a professorship and remote cabin. It is while at this remote cabin that he is drawn into a missing persons case and must confront his past.

Mark Young weaves a complicated web of connections. Though I wasn't entirely convinced of the catalyst that sent the dominoes tumbling, it was an interesting plot. Full of twist and red herrings, I was suspicious of almost all the characters. Sprinkled throughout the tale are subtle clues that allow the reader to eliminate suspects one by one. The story isn't over complex or steeped in subterfuge to the point that the reader cannot figure out the mystery. If you like to solve the crime before the characters, then you'll enjoy Revenge. I figured out the last of the mystery about 20 pages from the end when the characters are fully aware of who dunnit. 

There is a slight romance between Travis and Jessie. I didn't really feel a good connection between the two. I would expect them not to be together in future books. I really liked Frank and I hope any future books in this series will reprise this character.

If you are looking for a mystery that is complex to keep you on your toes, but simple enough to figure out, then pick up Revenge. Now I'm off to see what else is available from Mark Young as my mom has a birthday next week.

Your turn: Do you like to be able to solve the mystery or do you like to be kept guessing to the very end when the solution is revealed to the characters?
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  1. I like to be able to solve the mystery but I am usually not smart or observant enough to do so. Nice review of a book I need to add to my wishlist.

  2. I like to solve the mystery but only when there's a handful of pages to go. That way I can be smugly satisfied but still have enjoyed a gripping read too!

    Great review!