Plot or Premise
Dead Pull Hitter feels like it picks up where Gordon’s non-fiction left off: the Toronto Titans have finished in fourth place the previous year and are starting to pull it together for a pennant race; the protagonist Kate Henry is a woman sportswriter who’s covered them for five years; she works for the Toronto Planet which is sandwiched in the news market between the stodgy World and the bimbette-littered pages of the Mirror. At times it was hard to remind myself that this was the fiction category!
What I Liked
The fun doesn’t really take off until after the first body arrives. Up until then, it is basically a baseball story. After that, the murder mystery takes hold. The clues are there for the finding: some obvious, others more subtle. Nicely written, and combines the baseball storylines with an appropriate emphasis on the mystery. And the cop-as-a-romantic-partner and mystery-antagonist-theme is alive and well in the book.
What I Didn’t Like
The start on the baseball story gives you a fairly large cast of characters that may be easy for a baseball fan to keep straight (i.e. player X is a catcher), but the names all seemed to run together for me. The baseball players also seem to have an enormously large and direct role in Kate’s life, which doesn’t seem to fit with her being a member of the objective sports press that covers them regularly.
I was not personal friends with the author, but I did interact briefly with her online.
The Bottom Line
Nice start to the series