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Fatal Induction    by Bernadette Pajer order for
Fatal Induction
by Bernadette Pajer
Order:  USA  Can
Poisoned Pen, 2012 (2012)
Hardcover, Softcover, CD
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

It's 1901 in Seattle. An electrical competition affords Benjamin Bradshaw, Professor of Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington, the chance to introduce his newest invention, a telephonic system that will deliver music from Seattle's Grand Theater to homes throughout the city.

A peddler's cart is abandoned in his back lane and he is the unfortunate one to discover a dead man with his face in thick mud. It also appears that the dead man's ten year-old daughter is missing.

Ben, a widower with an eight year-old son, determines at his son's behest, that he will find this child, this decision leading him in directions he would rather not go. He fights the police department's apathy as he looks in the seedier parts of town for the little girl.

The dead man is discovered to have been selling a tonic, or restorative, containing poisons. Is his death revenge? Murder? Accident? Ben uses his invention to catch a murderer while his son saves the day.

This is a fun book, the second in the Professor Bradshaw Mystery series. The history of electricity at that time is a delight to read about. I remember my mother telling me that my grandmother was afraid to answer the telephone, frightened of being hurt in some way. And, according to Mother, Grandmother was a smart woman. I look forward to more in this series.

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