Dunne, Nov 2002, 23.95, 304 pp.
Forty-five year old private sleuth Nick Acropolis used to be a homicide detective until he was kicked off the force. His partner robbed a bank while Nick was waiting on line as the crime was taking place. His partner spoke to him before leaving but when questioned, Nick didn't reveal the name of the robber or what was said to him. Now Nick is working as an investigator for law firms like Siegal and McGovern and hating every minute of it.
He's currently working on a case where an off duty police officer was involved in road rage and the Review Board wants to terminate his employment. While trying to build a case for the lawyer's client, he meets Becky Westerfield who wants to hire him to find her missing father. The missing person's case turns into something much bigger when he learns that Becky's father is into massive public aid fraud and the people he works with at the pharmacy are dead or have disappeared. Nick is determined to get some answers no matter what the cost.
This is Jack Clark's debut novel and it is a fascinating urban noir thriller. The protagonist is a likable character who, though he feels sorry for himself, is an intelligent investigator who is determined to figure out how a series of crimes are connected. Readers will appreciate his tenacity and ability to follow a lead, no matter how minor it is. WESTERFIELD'S CHAIN is a mystery that keeps readers interested and turning the pages.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner