Mysterious Book Report - In Search Of Mercy

In Search Of Mercy by Michael Ayoob

(Minotaur, $24.99, 293 pages, ISBN 978-0-312-64492-5)

I just finished reading a new, award-winning first novel by a young upcoming writer named Michael Ayoob, for whom I predict a major writing career.  IN SEARCH OF MERCY features an unlikely private eye named Dexter Bozjak.  He’s twenty-something and mentally depressed, lives in Pittsburgh, where his only accomplishment in life until now, was to be personally responsible for losing the state hockey championship.  After the game, he’s abducted and tortured . . . which is the basis for a complex back-story that weaves through the main plot, the hunt for Mercy Carnahan, who disappeared 40 years ago.

Throw in a couple of broken families, some guilt, a little insanity, depression and any number of base criminal acts on top of a plot that has more twists in it than a two-dollar martini bar on a Saturday night . . . and this mystery becomes downright irresistible.  It’s not for the faint of heart however.  It contains strong language and graphic descriptions, but if you like ‘em hard-boiled and noir, then this one’s for you.


John Dwaine McKenna