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Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite
Fatal Pose by Barna William Donovan is a murder mystery with a twist. Gunnar Marino is an ex-bodybuilder who works as a private investigator. Being his own boss is better than he expected, and his job came with its perks. He has seen a lot in his time as a bodybuilder and private investigator, but nothing prepared him for his new case. Brad Holt was preparing for a comeback after a seven-year hiatus when he suddenly died. The apparent cause of his death is deemed to be his unhealthy diet. Holt’s sister asks Marino to look into Holt’s death and find out what happened to him. However, nothing could have prepared Marino for what he finds out about Holt’s past. The man wasn’t a saint, and he seems to have had a vendetta against Laura Preston. With the help of some unlikely sources, Gunnar Marino is adamant about closing this case soon, or else everyone he loves will pay the price.
Original and creative, author Barna William Donovan surprised me with how everything tied together. You can tell that he did his research about the bodybuilding world before he penned the story. The terminology, how certain things are expressed, and how they fit into the narrative is natural. Opening the story with Brad Holt and Laura Preston is the right decision (in my opinion), and introducing Marino later builds the hype. Marino’s method of investigation is as unique as he is. He is smart, observant, and very aware of what happens around him. He doesn’t trust easily, which makes the work easier for him. Having Diane and Erika by his side worked in his favor too. The dialogues are interesting and unique to each character. You can tell which character is speaking just by the way the dialogue is written. Simple yet effective and entertaining!