Monday, August 3, 2015

Michael J. McCann - Sorrow Lake - Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Detective Inspector Ellie March of the Ontario Provincial Police is called in to investigate when a man from the village of Sparrow Lake is found shot to death, execution style, in a farmer's field in rural eastern Ontario.

Leading an inexperienced team of detectives, she probes beneath the wintry surface of the township to discover the victim had a dark secret--one that may endanger others in the community as well.

For young and enthusiastic Detective Constable Kevin Walker, the chance to work with Ellie March is an honour, until the situation turns ugly and unexpected betrayal threatens to destroy his promising career.

My Review

Ellie March is "the unhappiest person, like, ever."

Since she investigates gruesome murders for a living, her job probably has something to do with it. She's quite good at what she does, so good that the men she's in charge of, know it and don't necessarily like it. It's hard being the team leader, especially when:

"You're supposed to be perfect. The margin of error in this line of work is slim, at best. Forget the pity party."

But sometimes, she's still not taken seriously by her male colleagues. When they call her "our own palace princess" or make snide comments like, "she's not much to look at, but she seems pretty smart." She just tries not to let it show that it bothers her because she's sacrificed everything for her work. She's lost touch with her elderly parents after they went into a nursing home. Her ex-husband remarried, and their two daughters resent her for never making time for them. She has very few friends and doesn't have a boyfriend or a significant other. She's completely and utterly alone.

And with the grueling type of work that she does, it really gets to her sometimes. She has no one to come home to and cuddle up next to in bed and talk out her problems. She's left to her own resources. She practices tai chi to calm her nerves and methodically cleans her gun every morning, even though she's never had to fire it in the line of duty. In order to function on a day-to-day basis, she compartmentalizes, shutting out all the personal stuff and focusing only on the case at hand. In fact, she enjoys the silence her life provides because she has the time to sort out all the details of the case in her mind in order to catch the killer as quickly as possible.

But Ellie doesn't completely slip under everyone's radar. Her new partner, Kevin Walker, respects her crime-fighting abilities. He's young, and together they're working on his first homicide case. He knows he can learn a lot from her, if he just follows her lead and pays attention to the way that she handles herself. She even encourages him to continually ask questions, and not to make any assumptions, just so he can appear smart in front of his superiors.

Kevin even introduces her to his favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant in town, The Silver Kettle, and that's where Ellie meets Skinny Jimmy, the gourmet chef who's now stuck being a short order cook. Skinny Jimmy rarely acknowledges anyone, and speaks to practically no one. He's a loner just like Ellie, but he takes a shine to her when she comes in with Kevin to pass out some police sketches of the murder suspect. He admires her no-nonsense demeanor and when she becomes a frequent customer, he has her Christmas dinner delivered to her door before a blizzard hits with detailed, handwritten instructions on how to serve it. When Kevin finds out about Skinny Jimmy's thoughtfulness, he's impressed since not people receive such one-on-one attention from him. Ellie broke through his shell.

Ellie's dedicated, and the people around her come to appreciate that. She wanted to be in law enforcement ever since her parents' shoe store was robbed when she was eleven years old. She felt terrified and helpless then, and she never wanted to feel that way again.

Sure, she may often hear, "never send a girl to do a man's job," but she doesn't care what anyone thinks of her. She gets up every morning and enjoys being a free agent, unencumbered to do what she does best—nailing the bad guys to the wall.


Video Trailer:

Sorrow Lake can be purchased at:
Barnes and Noble

Prices/Formats: $5.99 ebook, $19.99 paperback
Pages: 316
ISBN: 9781927884027
Publisher: Plaid Raccoon Press
Release: April 30, 2015
Click to add to your Goodreads list.

About the Author

Michael J. McCann was born and raised in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. He earned a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) with a major in English Literature from Trent University in Peterborough, and a Master of Arts in English from Queen's University in Kingston, ON.

He served as Production Editor of Criminal Reports (Third Series) at Carswell Legal Publications (Western), where he was also Co-ordinator of Law Reports, before joining Canada Customs, now the Canada Border Services Agency. While at CBSA he was a training specialist, project officer, and national program manager before leaving public service to write novels full time.

Mike now lives and writes in Oxford Station, Ontario. He is married to supernatural novelist Lynn L. Clark. They have one son.

Mike is a member of the Crime Writers of Canada and the Horror Writers Association.

He is an author of crime fiction and supernatural thrillers. His Donaghue and Stainer Crime Novel series includes Blood Passage, Marcie's Murder, The Fregoli Delusion, and The Rainy Day Killer. He is also the author of the supernatural thriller The Ghost Man. His most recent novel, Sorrow Lake, is the first book of his new March and Walker Crime Novel series set in eastern Ontario, Canada.

Links to connect with Michael:
Web Site
Blog (mystery)
Blog (paranormal)
Blog Tour Site

About the Giveaway

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  1. Thank you very much for this excellent analysis of Ellie March. I'm grateful that you've drawn out so many details that are central to her characterization. Very glad you've been able to participate in this blog tour! -Mike Mc