Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite
A Black Sail (Coleridge Taylor Mystery) by Rich Zahradnik is a beautifully written crime story; absorbing, fast-paced, and laced with literary gems that will make the overall reading experience fun and enjoyable for fans of mystery and murder. Coleridge Taylor is a police reporter covering Operation Sail. It's the eve of the U.S. Bicentennial and while the entire New York Harbor buzzes with activity, Taylor tumbles onto a very juicy story. The dead woman pulled out of the harbor, wearing bricks of heroin, is a glaring pointer to what seems to be an obvious situation, but it is only the surface of a crime that will try Taylor’s wits and put his life and that of his girlfriend, ex-cop Samantha Callahan, in grave danger.
In A Black Sail, Rich Zahradnik registers success on multiple levels. First, the writing is superb, and the pace mimics the rhythm of a heartbeat, with intense action and surprises that are dizzying. Second, the plot is well conceived and the author seems to have done a wonderful job in researching into the social issues of the historic moment against which this story is set. Third, the characters are gorgeously sculpted and compelling in various ways, and it will be hard not to sympathize with Callahan’s lifelong dream of a successful career in a world ready to admit only male candidates. Taylor has a charm and a recklessness about him that keeps readers worried whenever he steps into dangerous zones. Overall, Zahradnik is a great entertainer, a writer to keep an attentive eye on if you are a fan of crime novels and mystery.