Bolt Action Remedy by J.J. Hensley

Bolt Action Remedy by J.J. Hensley

Published by Down and Out Books (October 2, 2017)
226 pages (Kindle Edition)
Advance reading copy provided by the publisher
Preorder links: 

In early March 2014, I published my first blog post; later in the month, I received an email from author J.J. Hensley. He'd stumbled upon the blog through my Twitter feed and asked whether I might be interested in reading an advance copy of his second novel, Measure Twice

For most book nerds, like me, authors are celebrities; I felt honored to be contacted and excited to connect with an author who is a fellow runner and loves to create both snarky and thought-provoking social media content. 

Since then, I've read all four of Hensley's novels (Resolve, Measure Twice, Chalk's Outline, and this upcoming release) as well as a piece he contributed to Legacy: An Anthology; I highly recommend all of them and, if nothing else, you should definitely follow him on Twitter and Facebook for regular entertainment. As a former Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service, he is not lacking in excellent stories and experiences. 

All of Hensley's protagonists are rather tortured souls, yet quite endearing; Trevor Galloway, a former Pittsburgh narcotics detective, is no exception. He is hired by the family member of a prominent Pennsylvania businessman to consult on his homicide case, and finds himself drawn into the sport of biathlon

I don’t understand the thing. Skiing is a sport. Even shooting can be a sport. But it seems to me that if someone is going to grab a rifle and hop on a pair of skis, it should be preceded by someone saying, ‘Hold my beer and watch this.’

While trying to uncover potential leads, creating new enemies by asking too many questions, and struggling to separate his own challenging experiences from those of the case, Galloway creates a situation in which the family who has hired him, and the police chief who is his only ally, begins to wonder whether they will ever get the answers they seek. 

Working a case is like distance running. You can’t go all-out, all the time. You have to pace yourself, know your limitations, and focus on your strengths.

There is plenty of wit and snark for those of you who, like me, appreciate that sort of thing; it is definitely what draws me back, time and again, to Hensley's work and his characters. 

Long ago, my father had taken me camping somewhere in West Virginia and I think he said something about moss growing on the north side of a tree. However, my father also told me that women could get pregnant simply from laying down in the backseat of a car, so I learned early on to take his advice with a grain of salt and a shot of tequila.

For the true mystery/crime fan, know that you will never be disappointed by ambiguity or a shoddy ending; Hensley is an intuitive writer and includes all of the details necessary to tie his stories together flawlessly. 

This proved to be a quick read for me, since I could hardly wait to find out how this case would shake out, and I certainly appreciated the biathlon backdrop; highly recommend to those of you who love a great whodunit, regardless of your affinity toward sporting events, because there is plenty to enjoy!

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