Doesn’t sound like enough conflict for you die-hard mystery devotees yet? Turn another page. With the deftness of an all-star hitter, Ms. Clark brings in the bickering, grudge-holding, soon-to-be-ex husband and a couple of gotta love’ em kids inching their way into puberty.
Oh, and let’s not discount Senior Special Agent Wayne Largo, who arrives in his white Impala toting a big Smith and Wesson .357 and even bigger government credentials. Did I say white Impala? Dark hair, broad shoulders, trim waist? A drawl that has Georgia peaches dropping from the trees?
Yep. That’s him. Sigh.
Murder, kidnapping, edge-of-your-seat mayhem and sizzling romance done Southern style, C. Hope Clark’s debut novel packs it all into 272 pages. And then some. This author drops readers straight into the story’s heart with her wonderfully painted visuals of the South Carolina coast, her smart and snappy dialogue, in-depth characterizations, and infinite plot twists and turns. Protagonist Slade loses ground and gains it back again and again in LOWCOUNTRY BRIBE, but she never stops trying—and she never loses the stranglehold on integrity that’s helped her succeed in a man’s world. In a word, she's likeable. (I guess that’s two words.)
This is a good one, folks. I’d tout LOWCOUNTRY BRIBE as a page-turner, but readers will recognize this after the first chapter. I’m giving Ms. Clark’s effort five sterling stars, and you can bet I’ll be watching eagerly for the second installment in her Carolina Slade mystery series. Maybe a third installment, a fourth?
The granddaughter of a Mississippi cotton farmer, C. Hope Clark holds a B.S. in Agriculture with honors from Clemson University and 25 years experience with the U. S. Department of Agriculture. She is a long-term member of SC Writers Workshop Association, Sisters in Crime and MENSA.