Under the Radar (Zoe Chambers Mysteries #9) by Annette Dashofy
Published February 25th 2020 by Henery Press
Genre: Cozy Mystery
About the Book: Paramedic and deputy coroner Zoe Chambers responds to a shooting and discovers her longtime friend, Horace Pavelka, has gunned down a man who’d bullied him mercilessly for decades. Ruled self-defense, no charges are filed. When another of his tormentors turns up dead in Horace’s kitchen, Police Chief Pete Adams questions the man’s innocence in both cases…especially after Horace and his girlfriend go into hiding.
While fighting to clear her friend, Zoe is handed the opportunity to finally learn what really happened to her long-lost sibling. What starts out as a quick road trip on a quest for answers leads her to an unfamiliar city in the middle of a November blizzard, where she finds way more trouble than she bargained for.
Pete’s own search for his missing fiancée and a missing murderer ultimately traps him in a web of deception. Face-to-face with one of the most cunning and deadly killers of his law enforcement career, Pete realizes too late that this confrontation may well be his last.
This was another great addition to the Zoe Chambers Mystery series. I have said it before, but I love this series. It is what I call a “smart cozy”. Zoe is not an amateur sleuth, she is a paramedic and deputy coroner. She is also engaged to the chief of police. She has a reason to be at a crime scene as well as to do some investigating. Unfortunately, she doesn’t always know where the line is that she should not cross and that is when she runs into difficulty. She is still looking for her half-brother and her friend, reporter Lauren wants to help her find him. While doing that, she is also trying to plan her wedding. When the local bully is shot and killed by her friend, mild-mannered Horace, she wants to help him get cleared by sharing some information from high school that is very sensitive and emotional. When a friend of the bully is shot and killed in Horace’s house, he runs because he is sure he will be arrested for his murder. Zoe steps in to try and help. All of this comes together with a brilliant conclusion.
I love Zoe as the protagonist of this series. She is smart, independent, stubborn, intuitive, tough and caring. Her mother arrives in town to “help plan” her wedding and she is hilarious. I love the interactions between Kimberly and just about anyone. She is that demanding, sarcastic, privileged woman who can go all Mama Bear when her daughter is threatened. Pete plays a big role in this series, not only as the Police Chief, but as Zoe’s fiance. He is also a wonderful character who is smart and relies on his gut. He has a hard time saying no to Zoe when it comes to investigating, which I find funny, she pretty much has him wrapped around her finger, but not in a henpecked way. The secondary characters are all well developed and add much to the story. The story was very well-written with a well developed plot. I thought I had things figured out, then there was a twist or a red herring that sent me thinking in a different direction. There were several reveals in this story because of the different cases and mysteries, which I enjoy. Police often have many cases being investigated simultaneously and this was very realistic. The final reveal came fast and furious and I was totally shocked, although looking back, there had been clues. Once again, Annette Dashofy has penned a wonderful mystery that held my attention from the first page to the last. I do not hesitate to recommend this book and series to lovers of mysteries, cozy and others. 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 southwestern Pennsylvania. A former EMT and lifelong resident of the area about which she writes, Annette lives with her husband and one very spoiled cat on what was once her grandfather’s dairy farm. UNDER THE RADAR (February 2020) is the ninth in her series.