Work Title: Shadow of the Bomb
Work Author(s): Robert Goldsborough
256 pages, PDF and HTML $5.85
Reviewer: Maryann Miller
Blending fiction and history, the author offers readers an interesting tale rooted in the early development of the atom bomb. Set in Chicago in 1942, the mystery revolves around the murder of a professor at the University of Chicago. Steven "Snap" Malek, reporter for the Chicago Tribune, covers the initial story and gets caught up in the mystery of what is happening inside the locked buildings on campus and why someone wanted the professor dead.
The book is written in first person and Snap is a likable character with a pleasant voice: "It was a typical morning in the Headquarters press room---coffee, cigarettes, and spirited badinage, all suggestive of work avoidance. We each had reached the stage where we were essentially putting in our time, although as the best writer by far in this crew, I still had aspirations."
Snap shares the pressroom with reporters from competing newspapers, and the banter between them rings true for the era, although some readers may find it goes on for too long in places. There is also a bit of a problem with dialogue attributions. It is almost as if the author searched for how many ways he could avoid the simple "said." That style was popular when Rex Stout wrote the early Nero Wolfe novels, and perhaps that's what influenced Goldsborough. He was an avid fan of...