Past Due
William Lashner
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Past Due
William Lashner
William Morrow
480 pages
April 2004
rated 4 of 5 possible stars

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Lawyer Victor Carl always seems to be inthe midstof trouble. Now he finds out that a client of his, Joey Cheaps, has been found on the waterfront with his throat slashed. Joey had been to see Victor right before his death to reveal a secret from twenty years ago. That secret got Joey killed, and Victor decides to take the pieces of information Joey gave him and try to figure out who killed Joey and why.

It'snot as easyto discover information as Victor hoped it would be. There are a number of people involved with the long-ago event, and most of them don't want their secrets brought into the light again. Somehow, everything leads back tothe twenty-years-past attack on a law student-turned-drug dealer namedTommy Greeley. How are a state Supreme Court Justice, a young female "vice president," and a man who owns a motorcycle repair shop involved? More murdersbegin to occur, and Victor himself becomes a target of the hostility, pushing him to work harder at solving this mystery. Will he piece the puzzle together and finally put the past to rest?

Past Due is the fourth book by William Lashner featuring wry detective Victor Carl. One does not need to have read the previous books to enjoy the core story, although there is asecondary storyline featuring Victor's father that requires some background information to better understand it. Victor is an affable lawyer who always seems to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, involved with the wrong people. Don't underestimate him, though, because he's a lot sharper than he initially comes across. The characterwho makes Past Due shine is Kimberly Blue, a ditzy recent college graduate hired to be a "vice president of external affairs" for a mysterious company. Her unpolished innocence gives some comic relief to an intense mystery.

Past Due is so full of twists and turns that it's difficult to know who to trust,but that's part of the fun of the story. Seemingly innocent bystanders turn out to be involved up to their eyeballs.Readers will be misled as to the villain's identity many times.You will get caught up in this tumultuous ride and won't let go until the dizzying end.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Melissa Parcel, 2004

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