Jo Oliver is the Haversport Chief of Police, enmeshed in a messy divorce from her abusive husband and her replacement. The divorce is not going well, and Jo entertains pleasant thoughts of killing them both. Then somebody does and Jo is forced to call in the message of the double murder of her estranged husband, Del, an officer in the force and his mistress. Her second call is to her best friend, Nick Vitarello, an FBI officer.
The scene is messy—the killer had tortured them before they were murdered. Jo takes one look at the mayhem and vaults outside to throw up. How could anyone, even a murderer, be so cruel? She is Shattered by Death. Nick arrives and takes charge and when Paradise Deputy Chief Grundy shows up (not one of Jo’s fans), Nick shields her and takes her home.
Jo’s best friend, Donna, an amateur sleuth and premier research calls and makes Jo promise to call her as soon as she’s calmed down. Chilled, Jo decides to start a fire—blocking the flue is a bloody sledgehammer—yes, the murder weapon or one of them. Now she’s in really deep. And to make matters worse, the hearing on the adoption of her daughter-to-be, Sam, is coming up.
Then she gets a text: DON’T FEEL SO BAD. THEY DESERVED IT.
More murders, more fingers point at Jo—the victims all had ties to her. Will Donna and Nick and Jo ever sort this out? Will she be able to adopt Sam? Twists and turns and ups and downs fill the book. On top of everything, Nick declares his love for Jo—and she now has another dilemma. The story is great, the characters well developed, Jo and Nick and Donna and Sam are to be loved. Four stars! A great whodunit thriller.
Dr. Catherine Finger is also committed to protect and serve through her job as a high school principal in Grayslake, Illinois. Her first book in the series, Cleansed by Death, received great reviews. You’ll want to check her out at CatherineFinger.com.
Shattered by DeathShattered by Death was given to me by the author, but I was in no way obligated to write a favorable review.