Created by Brian Silverman
Freedom Drop (2021) introduces ex-Marine and former New York bar owner “with a few miles on him” LEN BUONFIGLIO, in what could be a great series, full of solid characters and sparkling with local colour.
Recently divorced and tired of the Big Apple life, he packed up and moved to the small (and fictitious) island of St. Pierre, a former British colony in the Caribbean, a few years earlier, hoping to turn his life around.
And promptly bought a bar, The Sporting Place.
When the novel starts, the ex-pat and his business partner and bartender Tubby are anxiously waiting the arrival of his daughter Kasie, his 16-year old daughter who he hasn’t seen in years, at the island’s small airstrip. Len’s hoping to make amends for too many lost years, but there’s more than domestic problems looming. When a popular tour guide becomes a suspect in the death of an American journalist the previous year, his mother asks “Mr. Len” (as he’s known among the locals) to look into it.
Because of course bartenders know everything?
Nope. Or not exactly. More because, since moving to St. Pierre, Len’s become fiercely protective of his new home, and has had a few “incidents”–a rather intense run-in with a Guyanese drug runner, and another time when he helped resolve “an injustice done to a local girl.” This had earned him a reputation as “a man people could talk to when they couldn’t talk to the police.”
Which is a pretty good definition of a P.I., if you ask me. Hopefully, in the sequel, Mr. Len will finally embrace his inner shamus.
By the way, Freedom Drop was the first novel published by Mystery Tribune, and sports a typically classy cover. Not a surprise, perhaps. Mystery Tribune is one of the best-looking crime mags in the biz, and if they continue to churn out books like this, we’re all in for a treat.
- “Silverman had me at the Caribbean setting, and held me with his fully human characters — of both good and bad natures — and their situation. Both the book and the publisher are welcome additions to the crime-writing world!”
— SJ Rozan
- “A buddy book, a whodunit, and a family drama, Freedom Drop is mystery magic.”
— Reed Farrel Coleman
THE DICK OF THE DAY
- July 24, 2021
THE BOTTOM LINE: When the good people of the tiny island of St. Pierre in the Caribbean can’t go to the cops, they turn to this former NY bar owner.
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.