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Unforced Error    by Mike Bowen order for
Unforced Error
by Mike Bowen
Order:  USA  Can
Poisoned Pen, 2004 (2004)
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Someone wielding a Civil War saber in the vicinity of a Civil War re-enactment kills a romance novel editor. Must be many of these sabers around the battlefield but none should be sharp enough to kill! In the second of a series, Rep and Melissa Bowen are drawn into the murder due to their friendship with the suspect and his wife.

The action is fast-paced, excitement on almost every page. Moral issues are at stake here as well as solving a murder. A World War II scenario evolves, and a necessary-to-the-plot lesson on grain silos creates a breath-holding scene. I enjoyed the many literary references, as I found I recognized most of them. A wonderful tour of Kansas City made me put that fine location on my must-see list. The seriousness of the re-enactors cleared up a question in my mind. I know someone immersed in re-enactments and I was never sure of his dedication whether it was a good ol' boy get-together or a chance to place oneself in that period of our country's history. History definitely won out here.

Unforced Error's author Mike Bowen is a trial lawyer, who has numerous mystery novels to his credit. He seems to have combined two careers very well.

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