“The Pastor and the Private Eye” is definitely a twisted tale that keeps you guessing to the end. Mr. Pine is able to show us the crime in progress even without giving us a clue as to who the real killer is.
My favorite character was Vint, the single pastor who makes unfortunate dating choices among his clergy. He is religious but not preachy and seems much more real than one might expect a pastor to be. His banter with the newbie private eye helping him with his case, and latest crush, Cilla, made me laugh.
They are an unlikely pair of opposites:
“Tell me about it! That’s why I took the correspondence course to be a private investigator in my spare time. I—“
“Correspondence course?” Vint blurted out.
“You bet!” Cilla said, taking no offense at the implication, “In some ways, it’s a lot harder than a classroom environment. You’re completely on your own…. I know I’m good with the details and I have patience for surveillance to boot. I’ll be a great investigator someday”
“No offense, but perhaps that’s why you’re finding cases hard to come by?”
“What, you think I put it in my ads, correspondence school trained private investigator, seeking employment?
I also really enjoyed Mr. Pine’s way of revealing the crime in progress without giving away the criminal at all. He keeps the reader guessing right up to the end about who the killer is. We also get insight into each victim and what their thoughts were in the moments that lead up to the unfortunate end of each of their lives. Mr. Pine does a great job with these tense scenes and seamlessly integrates them with the unfolding story of Pastor Vint.
I believe any fans of mystery or drama or anyone who likes a surprise twist ending would enjoy this book.