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Monday, March 5, 2012

The HOA Murders by Leon Robertson, a review

The inner workings of the home owner associations in Green Valley, AZ are exposed like festering wounds under the desert heat.
The suburbs of Tucson have never been laid quite so bare to close scrutiny as Pima County detectives scramble to find clues to a double murder. Two bodies, both men from a nearby housing addition, are found in the hard scrabble of a local shooting range.
With no ground-softening rain, the terrain gives up little evidence. Rumors were banded about that the deaths were related to smugglers, migrants arriving from Mexico, or that the deceased were Minutemen set upon by illegal drug-runners. As the police dig in and question the current and past HOA officers and residents of the community, quite a nest of vipers is uncovered. As all their movements seemed to be tracked from behind curtains, everyone’s motives are questioned.
Robertson, a retired epidemiologist, is no stranger to writing books; this is his debut novel. He uses his expertise, political opinions, and corny jokes to help detectives Caldera and Collins figure out who is DOA in the HOA. Don’t let this rookie’s novel— whose work could have used a decent edit—deter you from reading a surprisingly good who-dun-it. Go to the meetings, take a potluck dish, just be careful about what you eat…some elderly people serve a killer salad.

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