What if your life depended on the Chicago Cubs making it to the World Series? Diehard fans have always supported the team, which has not won a World Series since 1908, the longest drought in Major League Baseball, but this year people are dying for the Cubs to win literally. A serial killer is killing fans when the team loses, leaving them alive when the Cubs win. Either way, the killer leaves a calling card a Chicago Cubs cap. Can the police, the Cubs, and Major League Baseball stop the Cubs Cap Killer? The case falls into the lap of Detective Slats Grodsky, once Chicago s top cop but now resurrecting his career after a broken marriage and years of alcohol abuse. Grodsky’s road to redemption is rocky, however. Will his demons, detractors, and blunders keep him from following the killer s trail? Tension mounts outside and inside Wrigley Field as the team fights to pile up wins and not corpses.–Description from Amazon.com
“The Chicago Cap Murders” by newcomer Warren Friedman was a highly entertaining murder mystery. I will not go into the plot of the book and so forth as it would be too easy to give away something important and inadvertently include a spoiler. What I will say, is that this book surprised me in a good way. I am not an over-the-top baseball fan, but I found that I was still able to fully enjoy this book regardless. The author does a remarkable job of character building, giving each of the important characters in the book a history and a unique personality. The characters in this book are all necessary to the plot, which was a nice change. This author does not waste space with fluff. This book never loses pace and kept me turning pages long after I should have been in bed.
The book has been edited professionally, making it stand out from the crowd when it comes to the work of first-time authors. The descriptions are very visual and help move the story along as you can easily imagine being the main character and seeing through his eyes. I would bet that everyone in Chicago who reads this book will be smiling and nodding their heads.
Although I have seen plenty of murder mysteries with a tortured character leading the pack, I thought Mr. Friedman did an exemplary job of showing us the more human effect of alcoholism and what it can cost someone who struggles with it. I liked that the characters in this book were not from a cookie cutter and neither did they feel overly sensationalized. They seemed like real, everyday people which drew me into the story that much further.
The only negative I can really mention as far as this book goes, is that the swapping from flashback to flash-forward threw me a couple of times, but at the end of the book it becomes apparent why this was necessary. I felt that the author may have gone to a little bit of an extreme when making an original killer, but then again, with such a litany of other fictional killers parading through the world of literature, I also congratulate him for his originality.
The ending of this book contains some surprising elements and I thought it was a nice cap (no pun intended) to an exciting book.
Overall, this was one of the better books I have read this year. I am somewhat amazed that this is a first effort. One thing is for sure. If Mr. Friedman ever decides to set down the proverbial quill and parchment, he might have a fantastic career as a sportscaster. A very readable book by a new author to watch.
You can find this book available for purchase by going here: http://www.amazon.com/The-Chicago-Cap-Murders-ebook/product-reviews/B009160S7O/ref=cm_cr_dp_qt_hist_four?ie=UTF8&filterBy=addFourStar&showViewpoints=0