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Loot the Moon    by Mark Arsenault order for
Loot the Moon
by Mark Arsenault
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2009 (2009)
* * *   Reviewed by Tim Davis

When the highly recommended Loot the Moon begins, Billy Povich, writer of obituaries and gambler whose luck is not always the best, has been asked by attorney Martin Smothers to work discretely as a covert sleuth and find out what really happened to the murdered judge, Gilbert Harmony.

Because he needs the money and is almost always willing to help Smothers, Povich agrees, even though plenty of personal problems threaten to divert his full attention from the investigation. For one thing, Povich's father has serious medical problems and has threatened to discontinue treatment and choose instead an end-of-life option. For another thing, Povich has a precocious young son who makes plenty of demands on the easily distracted single parent.

Notwithstanding the distractions at home, Povich digs into the Harmony murder case - one considered closed by the police because of the obvious evidence and the dead suspect - but it soon appears as though the police might have missed something. Others connected with the case begin dying under very bizarre circumstances, too many people closely associated with Harmon may have had motives for hiring the dead suspect as a paid assassin, and the investigation threatens to become personal when Povich realizes someone may have set his (or her) sights on Povich and his family.

Danger is closing in, time is running out, and Povich needs to sharpen his focus. Then someone with a reputation for being very dangerous tells Povich, 'Reassess your assumptions because one of them is wrong. When you find out which one, the truth will be obvious.' Readers of Mark Arsenault's top-notch crime novel should follow the same advice.

As first-class entertainment, Loot the Moon is a fast-paced mystery filled with surprises, humor, and excitement. Don't miss it!

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