Last month I met Neal Sanders, a local author, while at a book signing for a small indie bookstore that carries our books. Although I don’t typically read murder mysteries or suspense novels I decided to give Murder Imperfect, his first book, a try and I am so glad that I did. I happily gave this book five stars.
As you may have noticed in my bio, my professional background is in financial communications. Murder Imperfect is based here in the Boston area and is full of twists and turns of the financial markets with hedge funds, biotech’s, analysts, bankers and an SEC investigation. I thoroughly enjoyed the novel, especially knowing that world so well, and wrote a blog titled: Now For Something Completely Different on my other blog this morning. The title is a spin off from Monty Python due to — well, you can just read the blog to see why.
For those of you who are interested in checking out the book a little more – I suggest you do! Mr. Sanders offers the first chapter of Murder Imperfect on his website, Hardington Press, so I have included some of it here for your reading pleasure — but honestly, I was hooked on the very first few lines. Enjoy!
You can call this a confession if you must. Last year – on June 27 to be specific – I murdered my husband. I did it with malice aforethought – a premeditated, cold blooded killing.
No. On second thought, let’s not call this a confession. A confession implies some acknowledgement of guilt or remorse. I don’t feel the least bit guilty and I certainly have no remorse. The bastard got what he deserved. If I may be permitted a lone dip into melodrama, he was a man who needed killing. I was the one who did it.
So, let’s just call this my story.
Killing him wasn’t my original plan. I was just going to divorce him. The usual grounds: he was cheating on me. Cheating, hell. He was addicted to twenty-six-year-olds and was carrying on affairs with a string of them. And it wasn’t like I didn’t have evidence.
But then I discovered he had squirreled away nearly five million dollars, all of it obtained quite illegally. He didn’t think I knew about it. In a divorce, he would have denied its existence and, once I proved otherwise, the SEC would take notice and lay claim to all of it. George would go to prison, of course, but I’d never see a dime of that five million and the government would start looking at our legitimate assets as well. The IRS or the SEC might well decide that they would make excellent punitive damages to dissuade others from following through with scams like George’s. It was entirely possible that I could end our marriage and wind up broke.
The notion of George in prison was gratifying, but not so much so that I was willing to become poor for the sense of satisfaction.
So, murder it was.
Maybe I should introduce myself and give you the standard background. My name is Katherine, better known as Kat. I am thirty-six now, considered quite attractive and I take care of myself. My complexion is fair, my hair is brunette and I have green eyes, or at least green contacts. Where I live now is of no consequence to this story but, last June, I lived in Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts.
At the time of his death, George was also thirty-six. In the eight years we were married he went from athletic and reasonably good looking to middle-aged with a budding double chin and a thickening waist that he hid by sucking in his stomach when he thought someone was looking, as well as with pleated pants and too-tight belts. He was employed as a securities analyst by the Boston firm of Peavy, Jensen & Beck.
‘Securities analyst’ is one of those job titles that cause peoples’ eyes to glaze over. In the right firm and the right industry, though – say, Goldman Sachs and biotechnology – it’s a very high-powered and prestigious occupation that pays extremely well. In a regional firm like PJ&B (whose clients invariably call it PB&J) and in an industry sector like food, beverage and lodging, it’s a snoozer of a career move, which made it perfect for a dullard like my late, unlamented husband.
Want more? Visit Neal Sanders’ website for the rest of the chapter . . .