The Man in the Crooked Hat is the latest book from Harry Dolan. This was a first read of this author for me, but it will certainly not be the last! Dolan's writing is clever, his plotting serpentine and his characters intriguing, making for an addictive read.
Jack Pellum is a former police detective. When his wife is murdered, Jack goes off the rails. The case remains unsolved after two years, but there is a clue that Jack is sure will lead him to the killer. The man wears a crooked hat. A recent murder finally lends credence to Jack's belief. The man with the hat is also sighted at this latest scene.....
Jack is a great character, well fleshed out in both personality and personally. I liked his voice. Dolan gives him snappy dialogue, but also an introspective internal look at grief, loss and love. Jack is juxtaposed with Michael Underhill. Yes, we know the name of the killer and he too has a voice. A frightening one, as he can justify everything he's doing and has done. "This is as much on you as it is on me. I'm not going to feel bad about this." We get to see inside Underhill's personal life as well.
The plotting of The Man in the Crooked Hat does not follow a straightforward path - instead it is, well, crooked. We know who the killer is - or do we? Dolan's plotting is delightfully complex, with minuscule clues that need to be connected. A clever cat and mouse game.
I really enjoyed this decidedly different mystery. Read an excerpt of The Man in the Crooked Hat.
You can connect with Harry Dolan on his website, follow him on Facebook and like him on Twitter.