Sunday, June 16, 2024

And Now, an Inspiring Story of Tragedy Overcome, by Joseph S. Walker

"And Now, an Inspiring Story of Tragedy Overcome," by Joseph S. Walker, iThree Strikes -- You're Dead!, edited by Donna  Andrews, Barb Goffman, and Marcia Talley, Wildside Press, 2024.

My friend and fellow SleuthSayer seems to be slipping.  Here it is June and he has only had  two stories reviewed in this column.

It is an interesting tale of worlds colliding.  Lonnie Walsh is a second generation mobster.  His sister dies giving birth to the daughter of Brant, a worthless jerk of a husband.  Now Lonnie has to watch over little Kayla while trying to keep idiot Brant out of trouble.

Things get more complicated when Kayla turns out to have the desire and potential to be  a world-class figure skater.   The best thing in this story is Alicia Petkov, the skating coach, who is as hard-bitten as any mobster you are likely to meet.  

"I'm telling you it's very possible that at some point, a group of people in a small room will decide who to send to the Olympics.  When they have that discussion, we want Kayla to be the girl with the saintly dead mother. Not the girl with a gangster in the family."

It strikes me that a lot of Walker's best stories are about complicated families. This is a fine example. 

1 comment:

  1. Many thanks, Rob. It's always an honor! I've never really thought of complicated families as one of my themes--but looking over some of my stories, I see what you mean. Sometimes it takes somebody else to see what we're actually doing, apparently.