Chuck is wasting away in a soul-crushing job. As an HR exec he spends his days avoiding lawsuits. But when Chuck ventures out of his Los Angeles skyscraper to investigate the disappearance of a colleague, he starts to feel alive again.
Chuck’s not your typical Private Investigator (he prefers a passive-aggressive approach over the old-fashioned fisticuffs kind) but he is amusingly effective at solving crimes. And at last he is able to apply that HR experience — the same one that gives him so much consternation — to a finer purpose.
This first book in the humorous mystery series takes Chuck from the shady underworld of Armenian mobsters to the billion-dollar land developments that serve as the lifeblood of Los Angeles. Murder lurks at every turn and this amateur sleuth needs to find the killer before his name is added to the list.
Chuck had climbed the corporate ladder as far as he was going to get. Bored with his job, he decides to drive over the personal effects of Ed, a man who had never missed a day of work in his life, and was even forced to take vacation when it was maxed out, after he went missing. When asked to help, Chuck tried to back out and not get involved, but when faced with going back to his empty apartment and ponder his failed marriage, he finds himself looking into Ed’s life. And out of nowhere, he gets himself tangled up in the investigation.
Chuck has quite the cynical outlook on corporate America. However, if you’ve ever spent time working there, he’s spot on. It was quite humorous and fun to read from the very beginning. There were parts that could have been cut here and there and they wouldn’t have affected the story, but they didn’t take away from the enjoyment of the reading too much.
There was a lull part way through the story. It was during this lull that I figured out the “whodunit.” That was sad since I was completely clueless up to that point, but it can’t be easy to put together the perfect mystery. The entire mystery rotated around real estate, and while that didn’t necessarily make for a riveting plot line, MacDonald definitely had a firm grasp on the ins and outs of how it would work. That was fairly impressive.
I will admit that I quite enjoyed the ending. It gave me a firm sense of satisfaction. I would definitely be interested in reading more of this series as I quite enjoyed the humor laced throughout. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys mystery.