Harry Starke

A Harry Starke Novel Book 1

Fiction - Mystery - Sleuth
252 Pages
Reviewed on 11/03/2015
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Carol Coetzee for Readers' Favorite

Harry Starke is a retired police officer turned private investigator. He has an adept staff and influential connections. His father is August Starke, a well known and successful personal injury lawyer. Harry has no qualms about using his connections when necessary. One evening, Harry is strolling along the pedestrian bridge over the Tennessee River when he encounters a frightened woman, running for her life. When she sees Harry, she jumps off the bridge and into the river. The police feel it is a suicide and can do nothing further, but Kate, his ex-colleague and longtime lover, asks him to look deeper into the matter to see what led to these tragic circumstances. She offers him her limited support. The victim is identified as Tabitha Willard, daughter of Justin Willard, a rich plastic surgeon. A strange, unusual and expensive pendant is found around Tabitha's neck, and no one in her circle of family or friends seems to recognize it as belonging to her. Harry is intrigued by the nature of the suicide, as well as his feelings of guilt that he caused it. He is convinced that the pendant plays an important part in this drama. Along the way, he encounters a host of people, some from the lower ranks and some from extremely influential circles. How deep does this mystery go? Join Harry Starke, artfully written by Blair Howard, as he untangles the web of lies and deceits to uncover the truth!

Get ready everyone, a new PI has entered Chattanooga and he plays rough! Meet Harry Starke, an ex-cop turned PI. Blair Howard introduces us to the "new guy" in Harry Starke. Harry Starke is the first novel in an extremely promising series. Harry is the original tough guy, with finely tuned senses and good instincts, as well as a rougher James Bond type of attitude. He is witty and clever and willing to go the extra mile. Join Harry as he slowly peels back layer upon layer of an intricate secret society, and reveals their dirty secrets. Somewhere in all this mystery lies the key to the suicide of Tabitha Willard, but it is a tangled web, so deeply hidden, and he must unravel it bit by bit to reach the ultimate truth. Luckily Harry is adept at understanding people, which is a major plus if he wants to stay one step ahead. A steady and deliberately tantalizing path leads carefully into a hidden world, which slowly begins to reveal itself with each layer that is removed. A brilliant, complex and exciting read with some stunning twists and turns to keep you on your toes! It is with great anticipation that I look forward to more of Harry Starke's adventures in future novels! A great book!

Connie M Anderson

THIS IS A REAL MUST READ. Ladies, you will love it as well as me.

I am one of Blair Howard's biggest fans. I love his very creative writing style. I had not known about his new detective series until I received a newsletter regarding his latest work. It said that Mr. Howard is about to release the second "Harry Starke" detgective ovel. I did not know there was even a first book out. I was confounded and didn't know what to expect.

I had read all of Mr. Howard's historical novels, and knew of his numerous travel guides and photography books. But I was more than a bit skeptical when I first saw the book's cover. Yet by the time I got into chapter two, I was completely hooked. I had to find out what happened next.

Mr. Howard always blows me away with his creative, come-to-life writing style; and yes his very cheeky, hilarious one liners. Only this book is exponentially so. I burst out laughing at "Harry's" personal, if not a little twisted, observations so loud that the neighbors across the street must have heard me. I can't help it. Mr. Howard is a writing genius with his shock and awe stroke of the pen.

What is so special about this book to me is that it crosses genres. It would seem like a great he-man, man cave gritty detective novel. Nothing wrong with that. I like those. But I love that it has the mystery of Starke having to seek the clues out in order to solve the case. It uncannily resembles a good old fashioned murder mystery with a great protagonist.

The reader is not privy to information that Harry doesn't yet know. We have to tag along with him, which only makes the book that much more suspenseful. The novel feeds your anticipation, it is titilating, and it moves you along seamlessly. It entices you to want to keep reading, always luring you on to uncover the outcome with Starke. The characters are richly brewed; and Harry has to peel back their many layers. Yet he is so in tune to human behaviors by now, he goes with his gut. And I believe that Mr. Blair Howard also goes with his, to yet again hit one out of the park. It is astonishing how well written this novel, from a completely different genre than he is known for, is. It makes me wonder if he used to be a real life Harry Sparke. It is as though he used to do that kind of work and then wrote about it. It is so exciting. I can't wait to get my hands on that second detective book.

I was given a free copy of this book so that I could read it and give my honest review.