CHOKE debut novel of author Kaye George!
Barnes and Noble Priced at $14.95
Amazon Priced at $10.79
Kindle: ASIN: B0052BDE4Q, Priced $3.75
Twenty-two-year-old Imogene Duckworthy is waiting tables at Huey's Hash to support her toddler daughter in tiny Saltlike, Texas, and just itching to become a private eye like the ones she admires on TV. When Huey is found murdered, she gets her chance to solve a real case ... but when Immy's mother is hauled in for the crime, the spunky waitress finds herself on the lam from the law.
My View a book review!
The first mystery novel in the Imogene Duckworthy series, followed by Smoke and Broke was nominated for Agatha Award in the Best First Novel of 2011 category.
This book is author’s dedication to her Mom, and I feel it links to the character of Mrs. Hortense Duckworthy. Aren’t all characters real life regular people having past and history?
Mrs. Hortense Duckworthy is a true three dimensional character throughout the book, with her unique vocabulary, a distinct trait, having specific emotional sensitivities related to her past, all really well portrayed by the author. She maintains her dignity through the good and the bad, experiencing the highs and lows with a unique emotional equilibrium.
As a reader I almost got attached to her and felt empathetic by the time I finished reading the book!
Though, the main character of the book is 22 year old Imogene Duckworthy or Immy, it’s mesmerizing to see the connectivity and contrast between these two characters, some places they complimented each other and different times seemed completely opposites.
Immy, Hortense and Drew (Immy’s daughter) together portrayed a beautiful family like any real one facing difficulties and triumphs.
Is this not an omnipresent real life phenomenon we experience in our relationships all around?
Hence this is a book for everybody!
There are not many dark and horrible secrets about Immy, except for her desire to become a private Investigator, like her father was. This single point of connectivity with her father drives her actions throughout the novel. It’s touching to see how she gathers gratification moving towards her dream.
Peripheral characters are numerous like April, Uncle Huey, Baxter Killroy, Xenia, Frankie Laramie etc.
The mystery character of Guido Giovanni adds lot of suspense to the story. I liked the far off approach author has adopted. It’s really interesting witnessing how he is entwined in the story at different places yet maintaining own space.
Baxter Killory seemed a villain at most times but the interesting turn of events makes it impossible to judge the character till the end.
Clem, the cook at uncle Huey’s restaurant, added action throughout but his personal traits were not really seen and that adds to the mystery element.
Officer Ralph a relatively dormant character in the beginning acquires the center stage, through a sequence of well-connected events.
The author has done an exemplary task of making the surroundings come alive; there is history and pictorial description of places.
My favorite lines, writer's view of the city- Whymee Falls, made it appear like I could see a section of it through her writing,
“It had multiple restaurants, but most of them were steak places with a few chains. It had a shopping center, but one of the two anchor stores had moved out ten years ago. It had quite a few strip shopping centers, but only about two-thirds of them were occupied………..”
It is interesting how the main character Immy connects with other characters at unexpected places this really makes it a true mystery, for example, Xenia met with a car accident and was unconscious Immy knew she was at the restaurant after her mother left, so she suspected her intentions and had to meet her to find out. Disguised in a new wig and some makeup she made it to the hospital and met Frankie Laramie who identified her through her disguise, provided vital clues which would help later to figure out the murder mystery of uncle Huey. She also suspected Frank. Author has artistically linked so many occurrences in one scene; this makes the book even more appealing.
There is a touch of poetry in language; makes reading the book pleasurable and wholesome.
“The streets were empty tonight. That was a break, at least. The drowsy chirp of crickets sang them to the door. Far in the distance, a pack of coyotes yipped. Immy looked up and saw a full moon, its pale radiance filtered through the branches of the huge live oak in Clem's front yard.”
It’s got fun wrapped between captivating events, my favorite part when Immy got stuck in the hospital cupboard disguised as a fat lady wearing funny clothing. The description and the way the event unfolds are really facetious. Author has cleverly sequenced it at a crucial place which makes it engrossing.
It is a beautifully woven story, so many characters all blended into a mystery. Yet amazingly all have a place and identity. This book is a good read, very entertaining; I enjoyed it and would recommend it to everybody. It surely is a decent buy!!
For a debut novel it’s amazing!
Author of CHOKE-An Emogine Duckworthy Edition published by CreateSpace an Independent Publishing Platform (June 10, 2012)
Her diverse background working as a janitor in a tractor factory, a mental health center secretary, a bookkeeper, a short order cook and a mainframe computer programmer, a nurse's aide. Not much exposure to enhance her writing skills makes one appreciate her talent more.