Totally Buzzed by Gale Borger
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This is a fine first novel from Gale Borger. I really enjoyed riding shot gun along side the main character, retired smalltown cop, Buzz Miller, and her collective family of odd balls, as she works to find the killer of a local greenhouse owner and finds herself embroiled in a case with international criminal implications. Set in the small, southeastern Wisconsin town of White Bass Lake, the story explores such varying topics as horse racing, gardening, and forensic botany, which Borger handles adroitly.
I’ll admit there were a couple of inconsistencies in the quality writing, but nothing that bothered me enough to put the book down. I was a little thrown by the flipping back and forth in POV from first person to third person, and there were some spots where I wasn’t sure what season it was supposed to be (summer or late fall). Borger also hints at some nice dark incidents in Miller’s past (like why she left the force), as well as played up Buzz’s Irish second sight ability, which helps her solve cases. The problem is that at least in this first book, there is too little follow through on the promise of these things. A little more would have done a lot to deepen further Miller’s character and left us teased just enough to want to read more.
On the whole, however, these issues were minor compared to the my overall enjoyment of the story. The plot was interesting and pulled me right along and I developed a real fondness for the characters.
Thanks for a good read, Gale. I’ve already loaded up the 2nd book in the series onto my Kindle and I’m hoping there’s a lot more to come!