Charles Stross, "Overtime"


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Review: Graverobbers Wanted: No Experience Necessary

Graverobbers Wanted: No Experience Necessary Graverobbers Wanted: No Experience Necessary by Jeff Strand
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Review of GRAVEROBBERS WANTED: NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY by Jeff Strand {Andrew Mayhem #1}

GRAVEROBBERS WANTED: NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY had literally been on my TBR list for about 4.5 years, the second book I listed as "to read" after I joined Goodreads on 1 January 2012. Just recently I found the ANDREW MAYHEM COLLECTION on Kindle Unlimited, a set of the first four books in Jeff Strand's wonderful Andrew Mayhem Series. Talk about feckless protagonists [I've been reviewing a 6-book series with a female protagonist who is nothing but feckless]: Andrew Mayhem, husband, father of 2 feisty offspring, non-worker, bouncing from university major to major to major, now from not-job to not-job, doing odds and ends to earn an income while his registered nurse wife "brings home the bacon," tries out videotaping a cheating spouse (not his) and ends up beaten and assaulted (not by cheater but on his behalf) which is very difficult to explain to Andrew's long-suffering wife Helen. Next, in the vein of "too good to be true," a curvaceous blonde offers Andrew and best friend Roger (never the sharpest tool in the shed) 20K to--wait for it--exhume her husband. But hang on! Husband isn't buried in a cemetery. No, his grave is off in the woods, isolated, untended, and had nothing to do with a funeral home or normal interment.

That alone would make most folks suspicious, and leery of participating. Not so this non-dynamic duo. Before the novel ends, a lot of people are going to get hurt, some very badly (fatally and it's not pretty), there will be abductions, confinement, terrors, threats, natural deaths, and broken bones. The storyline turns really ugly but unfortunately, somewhere in the world such events probably are occurring, given the nature of modern culture. Mr. Strand manages to leaven the horror throughout with the most clever humor. I generally eschew comedy in favor of real horror, but in this storyline I don't think I could have handled my outrage if it weren't for the consistent humorous notes so cleverly interwoven. Kudos to Jeff Strand for bringing a mystery that is both humor-filled and horrendous.

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