Title: Sunset Lake
Author: John Inman
Narrator: Randall Shaffer
Publisher: Dreampinner Press
Run Time: 11 hours and 51 minutes
At a Glance: Sunset Lake is not for the faint of heart, which turned out to be me!
Reviewed By: Kim
Blurb: Reverend Brian Lucas has a secret his congregation in the Nine Mile Methodist Church knows nothing about, and he’d really like to keep it that way. But even his earth-shattering secret takes a backseat to what else is happening in his tiny hometown.
Murders usually do that.
Brian’s “close friend,” Sam, is urging a resolution to their little problem, but Brian’s brother, Boyd, the County Sheriff, is more caught up in chasing down a homicidal maniac who is slaughtering little old ladies.
When Brian’s secret and Boyd’s mystery run into each other head on, and Boyd’s fifteen-year-old son, Jesse, gets involved, all hell breaks loose. Then a fourth death comes to terrify the town, and it is Brian who begins to see what is taking place in their little corner of the Corn Belt. But even for a Methodist minister, it will take more than prayer to set it right.
Review: I usually am a big fan of John Inman, but I was somewhat reluctant to give Sunset Lake a chance because of the possible religious overtones. I have my reasons to avoid stories that involve this background subject, but hey, this is John Inman and I’ve enjoyed many a story written by him, including his first mystery, A Hard Winter Rain, which hooked me into making him a future auto-buy. So, with a little trepidation, I plugged in my iPod and started listening to this book.
At first I had a little trouble getting into the story because it started off slowly, but then it picked up after the first murder occurred. I also had trouble liking the main character, Reverend Brian Lucas. As I listened to his POV, and learned about his secret, he came off as one who enjoys his religion, his flock, but doesn’t have much faith in his God to take care of him and his secret, nor to protect him from the ridicule of the townspeople or the church.
Randal Schaffer is a new to me narrator, and I was impressed that he gave such an excellent performance. I really was engrossed in the story. My only problem with Sunset Lake was when the big reveal happened—who did it and what happened afterward to this person had me so gut-wrenchingly upset that I was shaking. It made the story drop in rating for me in the blink of an eye, and I would have given anything to undo the picking up and listening to of this audiobook.
I did love Sam’s aunt; she brought a bit of humor into the story, which had me smiling at some of her wit, and even Boyd, Brian’s older brother, was a likeable character. Sam, Brian’s childhood friend was sweet, kind, and ever so patient, and he obviously knew about Brian’s secret.
Obviously, Sunset Lake is not for the faint of heart, which turned out to be me! I don’t enjoy stories that make me feel this way, and even Brian working out his secret and living his happily-ever-after weren’t enough to calm me down.
You can buy Sunset Lake here: