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Flamethrower    by Maggie Estep order for
by Maggie Estep
Order:  USA  Can
Three Rivers, 2006 (2006)
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

While leaving her psychiatrist's office, Ruby Murphy spots a man's leg in the fish tank in the reception room. Dr. Jody Ray acknowledges that the leg is that of her husband. She tells Ruby that he was kidnapped. So begins a delightful but violent tale of a professional who needs more help than she's doling out.

In the third of her Ruby Murphy series, Maggie Estep immediately drags the reader into her plot involving a horse who is addicted to peppermints, a morbidly fat cat, a stalker, a kidnapping, delightfully interesting characters and similes to knock your socks off ... 'Night came on like heartache' or 'where all the city's noise came to die.' You just have to appreciate writing that can sum up a feeling or scene so succinctly.

Ruby herself is a bag of hidden emotions that have to find release. Her reading material at the moment is Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants. Her home base is Coney Island. And when her employer, her boyfriend, and her friends turn their backs on her, she is left to find her own way out of her dilemna.

What fun reading. I couldn't sleep last night. Promised myself at 3:00 am that I would read for half an hour only. Finished at 6:00 am. Talk about not being able to put a book down.

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