Review: The Royal Wulff Murders

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Royal Wulff MurdersThe Royal Wulff Murders by Keith McCafferty
Series: Sean Stranahan Mystery #1
Published by Viking Adult on February 16, 2012
Genres: Mystery
Pages: 352
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
two-stars

A clever and fast-paced murder mystery full of wit, suspense, and fly fishing.

When a fishing guide reels in the body of a young man on the Madison, the Holy Grail of Montana trout rivers, Sheriff Martha Ettinger suspects foul play. It's not just the stick jammed into the man's eye that draws her attention; it's the Royal Wulff trout fly stuck in his bloated lower lip. Following her instincts, Ettinger soon finds herself crossing paths with Montana newcomer Sean Stranahan.

Fly fisher, painter, and has-been private detective, Stranahan left a failed marriage and lackluster career to drive to Montana, where he lives in an art studio decorated with fly-tying feathers and mouse droppings. With more luck catching fish than clients, Stranahan is completely captivated when Southern siren Velvet Lafayette walks into his life, intent on hiring his services to find her missing brother. The clues lead Stranahan and Ettinger back to Montana's Big Business: fly fishing. Where there's money, there's bound to be crime.

Fishing, fly or in any other variety, is not my thing at all. Heck, I hardly even eat fish, mostly only under duress. I am perfectly happy to let them keep doing their thing. Nor do I have any desire to ever go fishing myself. Mysteries aren’t my preferred reading either. But I try to be somewhat open-minded about my reading choices, so when the lure of a fly fishing mystery was dropped in front of me, I bit.

Should I have? Maybe not. The opening parts were definitely hard on me. There was so much fishing, like back-to-back fishing. This probably would have been okay if there had been some interesting conversations accompanying the fishing, but a lot of it was just someone out fishing with lots of details of fish and lures and bait and whatever. So not my thing.

Thankfully, things picked up when the sheriff got more page time. I liked her; she’s a sassy woman kicking butt in a traditionally masculine profession. Plus, she doesn’t fish, which meant that that did not happen much when she was around.

On the contrary, I did not like Velvet at all. The stage name is ridiculous, but her real name, Vareda Beaudreux, is no better. Really though, that’s not the issue, because that would be absurd and unfair. Velvet/Vareda is one of those women that men all of over the world seem to obsess over: beautiful, tortured, mysterious. A completely different writer, John Green, has written two books about girls like this. What is the fascination, guys? I’d like to know because I so do not get it. Throw the crazy ones back!

Basically, I’m not an ideal judge of this book. However, I do think that as mysteries go, it’s a pretty good one. Anyone who loves to fish and to read mysteries should not miss this.

One response to “Review: The Royal Wulff Murders”

  1. Heather says:

    Ahh, Rilo Kiley! I think the song you quoted may be the only one I haven’t heard by them. haha.

    Also, lure, fly fishing, bait; you’re so punny 🙂

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