Thursday, July 10, 2014

Oh, Bury Me Not

Oh, Bury Me Not
A Conan Flagg Mystery
M. K. Wren
Untreed Reads Publishing
Previously Published in 1976
Martha K. Renfroe
$ 5.99
192 pages

"Desperation makes strange alliances."

Most of us hope to never feel the need to hire a private investigator.  If you know someone who has worked as a P. I., would you hire someone you know or a stranger?   Who would be the best?

George McFalls has made this decision.  His family has been feuding with a neighboring family and he wants it to end.   With both families living in the ranching areas of Oregon, cattle is dependent on a plentiful water supply as well as a trained staff.  No one has the time or the patience for this feud where cattle is poisoned and fences cut.

George contacts his old-time friend and private investigator, Conan Flagg to hopefully stop the feud.   The local law enforcement seems disinterested.  George even arranges to fly Conan to the ranch.

However, George is killed when the reservoir was dynamited.

Being Conan spent his childhood is the area, he agrees to stay and attempts to stop the feud, hopefully without anyone else dying. 

Conan also quickly learns the there are many secrets which complicate the feud.  The sons, the McFalls have been in love with the daughters of the other. Already though, one daughter is dead and with George, that is a one-to-one death on both sides.  While questioning is some of the siblings actually have any cares for each other, this Romeo and Juliet does seems a little contrived.

Considering the time when this story was written, "Oh, Bury Me Not" is true to the time period of the 1970s without cellphones and with many people smoking cigarettes.  That just the way of the 1970s.

I enjoyed the backwoods conversational dialect even if I questioned whether it was authentic for Oregon in the 1970s.   The quaintness and "down home" quality created a warmth surrounding the coldness of some of the characters and their actions.

Oh, Bury Me Not is the third book in the Conan Flagg Mystery series by M. K. Wren whose real name is Martha K. Renfroe with Curiosity Didn't Kill the Cat and A Multitude of Sins  being the first books in this series.  Of the three books, this one is unquestionably my favorite having a well-organized and logical story sequence.

This cozy series of books featuring bookstore owner, private investigator extraordinaire Conan Flagg are quick reads with well-planned stories from a time not so long ago when life was a little simpler.

It is wonderful that Untreed Reads is allowing readers to discover these hidden gems.

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