Thursday, September 8, 2016

REVIEW: The Cantaloupe Thief

The Cantaloupe Thief
Author: Deb Richardson-Moore

**I received a copy of this book from Lion Hudson/Lion Fiction via NetGalley in exchange for a fair, honest review.**

The Cantaloupe Thief is Deb Richardson-Moore's debut novel and the first in the Branigan Powers Mystery series. The book is a strong mix of murder mystery and social commentary. The fact that the homeless are often invisible and ignored by society figures strongly in the plot.

Branigan Powers is a journalist in northern Georgia. When she is assigned to investigate a 10-year old cold case murder, she finds herself partnering with a local homeless veteran. Malachi is a suspect in the murder of wealthy widow Alberta Grambling-Resnick, but also the perfect partner to help in the investigation. Powers finds that the homeless are able to move about and investigate more easily than she can, as they are often ignored and therefore, nearly invisible. Resnick was stabbed to death in her home a decade earlier after announcing that she meant to change her will. There are plenty of suspects in the cold case, but Powers finds that the original investigation was slip-shod. The police didn't think to question any of the homeless people who might have had useful information. Just as Powers starts digging and asking questions, someone starts murdering the homeless.

This was an excellent, very suspenseful book!! It is clearly evident that Richardson-Moore is writing from the heart. She is a pastor who works with the homeless. Her caring for the homeless is reflected in her well-written debut novel! The book jumps into the action immediately in the first chapter, and doesn't stop until the very last word. I didn't see the ending coming....very suspenseful, thrilling mystery! Great debut novel! I look forward to the next book in this series.

Deb Richardson-Moore has also written a non-fiction book The Weight of Mercy: A Novice Pastor on the City Streets.

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