8th in Series
Henery Press (May 14, 2019)
Hardcover: 286 pages
Paperback: 286 pages
Paramedic Zoe Chambers hoped a week at the Monongahela County Fair, showing her horse and manning the ambulance, would provide a much-needed diversion from recent events that continue to haunt her.
An old friend, a bossy nemesis, and a teenage crush from her 4-H days fail to offer the distraction she had in mind. But ever the caregiver, she soon bonds with a troubled teen and a grieving father.
Back in Vance Township, a missing woman turns up dead, leading Police Chief Pete Adams into a journey through her mysterious final hours. With each new clue, the tragic circumstances of her death grow increasingly muddied.
A cryptic phone call leads Pete to join Zoe for an evening at the fairgrounds where the annual school bus demolition derby concludes with a gruesome discovery and a new case that may or may not be connected to the first.
Pete’s quest for the motive behind two homicides—and Zoe’s stubborn determination to reunite a family—thrust them both onto a collision course with a violent and desperate felon.
Fair Game is the eighth book in Annette Dashofy’s, Zoe Chambers Mystery series. Zoe Chambers is a paramedic and deputy coroner for Monongahela County, Pennsylvania. She loves horses and owns a farm where she houses her horse, Windstar. The house on the property is not livable, and Pete, her boyfriend, jokingly, but truthfully, calls it the money-pit. Zoe’s second cousin, Patsy, has convinced Zoe to show her horse at the county fair. She and her partner Earl are manning the ambulance and medical tent as long as they are already there for the week. Zoe knows a lot of the horse people as well as many who were in 4-H with her when she was younger. When one of the parents turns up dead outside a local bar, Pete is convinced it was not an accident due to overindulging in alcohol. When a second body turns up, they are frantically trying to find the killer and the connection between the two deaths.
This is a wonderful series with great, realistic characters. I love Zoe and Pete. They are both intelligent, caring, loyal and somewhat emotional. Both of them have baggage that they are trying to come to terms with, yet it makes them the people they are. I like that Zoe has a profession that is related to law enforcement. She is not an amateur sleuth like many cozies have, but she is involved in solving the cases due to her job. She also does not take a lot of chances that put her in danger, although she might still have situations that are not safe. I enjoy the relationship between Pete and Zoe and am so glad to see it moving forward. The police in this series and book are not bumblers, they actually do solve the cases with some help. The storyline is well plotted, with a lot of twists and turns that kept me engaged and reading quickly. There’s a lot happening in this story, yet I never felt confused or lost. There were a couple of subplots that added some mystery and red herrings to the major storyline.
I call this series a smart cozy mystery. It is a bit edgier than others I have read, yet I would still consider it a cozy. I definitely recommend this book and series to those who love mystery stories as well as cozy mystery aficionados. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book upon request. The rating, ideas and opinions shared are my own.
About the Author: Annette Dashofy is the USA Today best-selling author of the Zoe Chambers mystery series about a paramedic and deputy coroner in rural Pennsylvania’s tight-knit Vance Township. CIRCLE OF INFLUENCE was a finalist for the Agatha Award for Best First Novel of 2014 and BRIDGES BURNEDwas nominated for the 2015 Agatha for Best Contemporary Novel.