Without Warning: A Thriller by David Rosenfelt (Minotaur Books, $25.99, 295 pages)
It was hard for me to judge what the impact of the news would be once the public became aware of it. I wasn’t concerned that people would consider me a suspect in the killings; I was too well-known, and respected, for that to be a likely outcome. Besides, the circumstances of the capsule predictions were so bizarre as to make it even more improbable that I could be involved.
Maine Police Chief Jake Robbins is a widower whose wife was murdered by her former lover, the husband of an old high school sweetheart, Katie Sanford. Moreover, the town’s newspaper, The Wilton Journal, has been in Katie’s family for generations. That’s just for starters!
Wilton is a small Maine town where a recent flood caused by a hurricane has put the contents of a 50-year time capsule at risk of water damage. The time capsule is a local tradition sponsored by the Journal. Naturally, the right thing to do is to dig up the capsule and check for damage. It has been buried for four years. Inspection of the capsule’s contents produces a surprise. There’s an additional packet of papers which were not part of the original burial listing. The papers contain ominous predictions, some of which have come to pass.
Author Rosenfelt is so adept at spinning a tale that the reader is lulled into a sense of being on the scene and – contrary to the pace of a thriller, this one moves at a Maine small town speed. A third person narrator in some of the chapters offsets the narrative by Jake Robbins. Rosenfelt also sprinkles in an occasional peek into the mind of a very twisted person!
No need for spoiler alerts here! This reviewer wouldn’t dream of ruining such a well-crafted tale.