Sunday, January 24, 2021

The Chester Creek Murders

I published this review on my Librarything account and, this morning thought I should add it to Amazon, the place where I purchased it. Sadly I am not able to post a review there because I haven't reached the minimum spend to gain permission to write a review! As I am gagged on Amazon I am sharing my review here.

As a member of the Nathan Dylan Goodwin Fan Club with many other genealogists I have been anxiously waiting for the debut of this work. Now that I have read it I am disappointed that I will have to wait for Nathan to recharge his batteries and research and write another tale.

This book was Nathan's best work yet. It is an improvement on his other works on so many levels. I have been critical of the covers for Nathan's earlier books but I loved this one, it set the scene for a real page-turner that held my attention from the first to the last word.

Between the covers I found a believable story populated with interesting characters and many story lines that ended with a couple of cliff-hangers allowing for future works in the series. I felt for the main character Maddie, owner of a genetic genealogy firm who, in spite of issues in her personal life, was able to rally and support her team in identifying through DNA the serai killer in a cold case.

As a genealogist I appreciated the detailed description of the methodologies used to solve the case. Nathan who is an Englishman must have been on a steep learning curve as he learnt about all the resources during the research for the book. To his credit he deferred to some of the top genealogists in the US for assistance. For this Aussie with little knowledge of US resources reading this book gave me a sugar-coated way of learning more on that subject.

I loved that the work was set in the geneamecca of Salt Lake City, a place I have visited on many occasions. Nathan's descriptions of the weather and the areas around Salt Lake were spot on. I noted that he named one of his characters, Kenyatta. Was that a nod to US genealogist Kenyatta Berry? One of the homes he described in South Jordan sounded similar to a genealogists's home I have visited there! Those who haven't been to Salt Lake will get an accurate picture of the place from reading this story.

This work is easy to read with many descriptive phrases. Nathan's prose in US English lends authority to the story and made the characters more believable. Nathan's writing has certainly developed since his first novel.

This book was unputdownable, a riveting story combined with a lesson in genealogy research and a discussion of issues facing family historians.

Highly recommended for family historians, those who love a good mystery and people inquisitive about DNA.

I read the eBook version of this work from Amazon that was priced at just $AU7.50 - great value for 4 hours entertainment, I look forward to the arrival of my hard copy that I will read at a more leisurely pace.

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