Friday, September 4, 2020

Hide and Seek


Hide and Seek
The McLaren Mysteries Book 12
by Jo A. Hiestand
Genre: Mystery 

Playing a mystery game seems the perfect way to celebrate Jamie Kydd’s promotion to Detective Sergeant rank. But the game turns real when a body turns up in the pretend crime scene. Perhaps worse than spoiling the party, the corpse is someone Jamie knows.
Even though the police take on the case, Jamie asks his friend, former police detective Michael McLaren, to also investigate—concerned that the victim’s criminal past may dampen the Constabulary’s usual fervor to nab his killer. It seems to have been a smart decision, for the police aren’t expending a lot of energy on the inquiry.
Suspects float around McLaren…half truthful, hard to find. More like wraiths than flesh and blood. If the victim’s burglary partner, ex-wife, or childhood friend didn’t kill Dan, who did? It’s a desperate game between McLaren and a killer who’s playing Hide and Seek.

My Review...

McLaren is back but the tables have turned a little. The tough cases are in someone else’s backyard for a change. McLaren’s mate Jamie is being promoted and they’re having a party. While it might be the surprise of a lifetime it most certainly is not the one they were planning.

Another great Michael McLaren story. My favorite character is back mending stone walls and helping people solve crimes; people that really need help. And yet, someone is lying; you know how mysteries are...someone is always lying.

Although the POV hasn’t changed, the author has managed to change the spotlight to shine on a secondary character and she’s done a good job of it. She’s almost made Jamie and McLaren seem as if they were partners again; working together as they did years ago.

Hiestand is excellent at making her characters come alive. Her writing is poetic. “...grey clouds heavy with potential rain fanned eastward from the western horizon. Everything earthbound took on their dense, somber hue...”.  Between her expressive writing and skill at character description, it’s almost as if she creates a stage in your mind; as if you’re watching a “play”.

There were two other aspects I thought were great in this book. The author created a lot more tension during the action scenes. Made me want to read even faster. And secondly, she made it impossible to know who the bad guy/girl was right til the very end.

This is Book 12 of a series titled “The McLaren Mysteries”. While it can be read as a stand-alone, you’ll be missing out on a lot of McLaren cases if you don’t read the whole series.

** On Sale for only .99 cents!!**

Books, Girl Scouts and music filled Jo A. Hiestand's childhood. She discovered the magic of words and the worlds they create: mysteries, English medieval history, the natural world. She explored the joys of the outdoors through Girl Scout camping trips and summers as a canoeing instructor and camp counselor. Brought up on classical, big band and baroque music, she was groomed as a concert pianist until forsaking the piano for the harpsichord. She also plays guitar and has sung in a semi-professional folkgroup in the US and as a soloist in England.
This mixture formed the foundation for her writing. A true Anglophile, Jo wanted to create a mystery series that featured a British police detective who left the Force over an injustice and now investigates cold cases on his own. The result is the McLaren Mysteries, featuring ex-police detective Michael McLaren. Jo's insistence for accuracy -- from police methods and location layout to the general feel of the area -- has driven her innumerable times to Derbyshire. These explorations and conferences with police friends provide the detail filling the books. She also writes the amateur sleuth Linn House Mysteries under the pen name Jessie McAlan. In 1999 Jo returned to Webster University to major in English. She graduated in 2001 with a BA degree and departmental honors.
She has employed her love of writing, board games and music in other ways by co-inventing a mystery-solving game, P.I.R.A.T.E.S., which uses maps, graphics, song lyrics, and other clues to lead the players to the lost treasure. Jo founded the Greater St. Louis Chapter of Sisters in Crime, serving as its first president. Besides her love of mysteries and early music, she also enjoys photography, reading, baking, and her backyard wildlife.Her cat, Tennyson, shares her St. Louis home.

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$25 Amazon


  1. Thanks for hosting my book today. And thank you for such a nice review. I'm glad to be here!

  2. Glad to have you here. Best of luck with your book.

  3. Hi, Victoria. Thanks for stopping by Ourtownbooksreviews today. Good luck with the raffle drawing!

  4. Good morning, Jo, my question for you today is, would you ever consider co-authoring a book and if so, who would you most like to work with?


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