Thursday, September 16, 2010

Desolate Angel

Title: Desolate Angel

Author: Chaz McGee (Katy Munger)

Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime Mystery

Copyright Date: 2009

Print Date: July 2009

ISBN: 9780425228739

Pages: 298

Series: 1st in the Dead Detective Mystery series

Book Description (from back cover):
He was once a second-rate cop, a mediocre husband and an absent father. But ever since he was killed in a drug bust gone bad, Kevin Fahey's been a lost soul in limbo, searching for a way out of his solitude and hoping for redemption. Now he'll have to prove to be a better ghost than he ever was a man...

After I died, I wandered my town, unseen, alone, and wondering why I'd been sentenced to linger in this world. Then Alissa, the victim in a long-ago murder case I'd worked, came to me. She led me to a body sprawled in the weeds, and the terrible truth dawned on me: I'd let Alissa's real killer escape. I'd imprisoned an innocent man — and now another young girl was dead.

I know my redemption lies in righting this wrong. And the only way I can do that is to somehow forge a connection with my replacement on the force, Maggie Gunn. Now I'm haunted by the fear that dragging Maggie into this may turn out to be the biggest mistake of my afterlife....

Kevin Fahey was a drunk who cheated on his wife, neglected his family, and mostly neglected his job as well... during his life. I have to say drunk and cheater are two descriptions that really turn me off. However, Kevin is past all that. He has to be because he's dead.

Something I liked (such a little thing, but probably what made me able to get past Kevin's past) is that he's so understanding about not only the mistakes he made during life, but also how they affected his family. So when his wife is moving on with her life, he's happy for her, not bitter. I admired that. Another thing I admired was how well he handled the hits to his pride when his detecting (during the course of his life) was questioned or shown to be lacking.

Anyway, the main hook to this story is how intense it is. I felt so helpless and frustrated whenever Kevin wanted to communicate with someone and couldn't. It says in the description that he is sure he can find his redemption in helping; I couldn't understand why he was so sure he could help when he couldn't talk to anyone (except maybe a child or crazy person). But it's that same frustration that made the story so intense.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this and look forward to reading more Dead Detective stories. Though I do hope Kevin finds some better way to communicate. The frustration I felt was good for this one book. Beyond that, and it may be too much for me...


  1. I have to agree...I have issues with the main character being a cheater, but sounds like he's not a bad guy at his core.

  2. I liked dead, ghost Kevin as opposed to live, real Kevin.


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