By: JP O’Donnell
Publisher: Outskirts Press
Publication Date: September 2018
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: November 6, 2018
Don Kraemer is a man with issues; mostly normal, everyday issues, such as lack of money, trying to help a beloved daughter, and attempting to figure out if expanding his landscaping business is the way to go in order to make more money. He is thinking about these things as he jogs along the dirt path that leads through the woods and across an old, iron bridge spanning the Wabash River. This is most assuredly a calm scene, until a pit bull comes out of nowhere and literally attacks the poor man. Along with the dog comes an owner who, upon hearing the anger in Don’s voice, offers to give him a necklace of value if he will just forget the whole thing. Not only is this a strange conversation to have, but Don also gets an even stranger feeling when the man takes off down a hill with his dog, climbs into a truck, and is followed from the area by an unmarked police car.
Daniel Gallagher is a private investigator who is currently dealing with a loss. Working hard, Gallagher has brought about justice for many. But while doing so, he has put his life on the line and endangered the people he loved the most. One person who had to deal with the danger was his now ex-wife, Kate. Although she had a hand in the break-up, the majority of the fault came from Daniel when taking on “just one more” case became his mantra.
Daniel is trying to let his work help him get over Kate, but it’s not doing that whatsoever. His mind is stuck on her and their life together. Known by the lawyers in Boston, Gallagher receives cases he likes because he feels he does them well, such as, finding missing teens who decided to scamper away with the boy or girlfriend their parents couldn’t stand. But what brings in the money are cases where he must investigate a claim of disability for an insurance company, trying to unearth if the person’s words are phony or not, which leaves a sick feeling in his stomach.
46 years old, a man who is disheartened, and a two-time loser at marriage, Gallagher’s life is about to get even more bleak when the phone rings in his office. Turns out a new case is on the horizon, one that will have Gallagher coming face-to-face with secrets, lies and villains that, up until now, he has never had to witness. When his ex-father-in-law, Bob McSurdy, calls him out of the blue, Daniel learns that Kate has gone missing, and his shock soon turns into absolute fear.
As a search commences, various layers of crime are uncovered and “fit” together like pieces of an extraordinary puzzle. Weapons sold illegally, police corruption, human trafficking, drugs – you name it, this one’s got it. And how, exactly, does a jogger attacked by a pit bull “fit” in with all this? …You shall see.
This story becomes an intricate web with surprises that readers will not see coming. Although being the third installment of the Gallagher Mysteries, it can also be debated that it is the “best of the best” that shows more emotion than ever before, along with the fast, action-packed, thrilling plot that this author is so good at delivering.
Quill says: Perfectly crafted with an ending that will have readers watching the internet in order to find out when the next Gallagher novel will be released!
For more information on Pulse of My Heart, please visit the author's website at: jpodonnell.com