Ghost Music

A Marcus Brace Mystery

Fiction - Mystery - General
274 Pages
Reviewed on 11/23/2013
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Patrick Linder was born in Wichita, KS and moved to the Seattle area in 1997. Awarded a Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Study, he earned his PhD in American Literature from the University of Washington in 2005. Patrick lives with his two children in the Seattle area. He is currently at work on the follow-up to Ghost Music, again featuring Seattle Detective Marcus Brace.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Lit Amri for Readers' Favorite

In Ghost Music, Detective Marcus Brace finds his card on a brutally bludgeoned female body. The killer wants him to handle the crime, plain as day. A burned-out cop with a strenuous job and a failed marriage, a death of someone in his past will lead Brace to the hidden truth that crosses paths with his intriguing case. As the first installment of the Marcus Brace Mystery series, this haunting psychological thriller is written by Patrick Linder.

Ghost Music is a commendable and flawless mystery crime tale. The main strength of the novel is evident right away - author Patrick Linder's faultless writing style. He has woven a richly detailed book, effortlessly allowing readers to immerse themselves in Brace's attraction to his colleague, Detective Ashlynn Rivers, his failed marriage, his relationship with his father, and the intriguing mystery that Mr. Brey left for him to solve. It is easy to connect to this flawed protagonist, as he is believable and well-fleshed out, which is also the case for the other characters. Ashlynn complements Brace well, which makes them perfect partners professionally and romantically. Linder also captures the mood of the surroundings perfectly; the gory feel of the crime scenes, the busy, colorful senses of Seattle city, and windy, sunny Kansas.

All in all, Ghost Music is a gritty, meaty mystery novel where its intrinsic quality is worth being read slowly to digest its exciting premise and well-structured plot. Combined with Linder's watertight prose, the Marcus Brace Mystery series would easily attract a wide range of readers.

Mamta Madhavan

Ghost Music (A Marcus Brace Mystery) by Patrick Linder is about Detective Marcus Brace, who is going through a tough phase both personally and professionally. A phone call from a long forgotten family member and a murder pull him back into what he has been avoiding. He realizes that the killer is targeting those who are close to him. The brutal murders reveal a lot about the detective, the killer, and the victims, and that is what sets the mood of the story as intriguing and spine chilling.

The book is an interesting combination of history and mystery. These two genres are woven together to make an exciting plot. The characters are all well sketched, making the plot fast-paced and full of action. The ending is a surprise which adds to the mystery element of the story. The book holds readers in suspense, wondering what will happen in the next moment. The voices in the story are profound and they are all also extremely fascinating, making you think of the voices you hear. Seattle is captured beautifully and locals will enjoy reading the story.

Mystery plots are usually not so easy to pen because the author has to be astute enough to come up with something unique and innovative to capture a reader's interest. The history angle along with the mystery element, with powerful characterization and narration, is the strong point of this story. The author has skillfully woven them all together with a surprise climax.

Jack Magnus

Ghost Music (A Marcus Brace Mystery) is a police procedural written by Patrick Linder. Marcus Brace lives and works in Seattle. He has a partner, Right-Way Ryota, so named for his rigid adherence to rules and protocol. Brace is slowly coming to terms with the fact that his marriage ended and is finding himself attracted to another detective on the force, Ashlynn. When the story opens, the detectives have begun investigating the death of a woman. Brace receives a call from Mike, a man he had grown up with, telling him that Mike's father, Mr. Brey, had died and left Brace a bequest. Brace makes the trip back home to Kansas where he had grown up. Mr. Brey had taken Brace in when Brace's mother deserted the family and his father was in no shape to take care of him. Brace is appalled to discover that Mike is now a meth addict and that Mr. Brey's body was cremated before he had had a chance to see him. The legacy he receives is confusing, but he fulfills Mr. Brey's last request, which is for Brace to visit his father before he leaves Kansas.

Patrick Linder's novel is an exciting and well-written police procedural. Brace is a complex character whose family history has left him with scars he has internalized. The plot is unique and left me guessing until the very end. Linder builds a solid cast of characters in Ghost Music, and the reader sees just enough of each of them to feel that there's plenty more to be learned in subsequent Marcus Brace mysteries. Add to that the cool and cloudy flavor of a Seattle winter, and you have a winning combination. Ghost Music is a good, solid police procedural and is highly recommended