This review is written with thanks to Jim Ody for my copy of The Crazy Season.
Joel Baxter is infamous for solving weird and bizarre cases that others avoid. So, when he receives an email from a teenage boy Tim saying his town is cursed, he cannot turn it down.
“…I will more than likely be dead when you read this. There is nothing I can do about it. It’s the curse, and we’ve hit The Crazy Season.” Every 20 years, there are a handful of unexplained teenage deaths and it’s started again.
With the help of his straight-talking friend Melody, they set out to get to the bottom of the alleged curse. Everybody in Black Rock has secrets and nobody wants to speak.
The closer they get to truth the more Joel and Melody realise that their involvement is far from coincidental.
I’ve never read anything by Jim Ody before but The Crazy Season will not be my last outing with one of his books! As The Crazy Season is the beginning of a series, it’s a great place to start and it is a wonderful introduction to some colourful and brilliantly created characters. It is clear from the very beginning that Joel has a lot to give the reader and there is a lot going on in his life in which the reader can invest. His background is very well thought out and developed. His partnership with Melody is brilliant: it gives us some much needed humour and I love the way they bounce off each other, both in terms of their personalities and the way they approach the case.
The teenagers that are at the centre of the case are also very well constructed and their mannerisms are really well observed. The case itself is intriguing and I definitely wanted to get the bottom of it.
There are a lot of changes in terms of viewpoints and time shifts but this is always clear and never confusing and I did think it helped to be able to look at the wider story. The ending of The Crazy Season is very tense and this comes almost out of nowhere! There were so many twists and turns and each one took me by surprise. The case concludes in a very explosive way and I was desperate to find out what would happen.
I am looking forward to seeing where Ody takes these characters next – just as soon as I have recovered from that ending, which I must have read with something in my eye.
The Crazy Season is available from Amazon.