I must admit I hadn’t come across C.J. Brearton until I read this book. Now his back catalogue is at the top of my to-be-read pile.
The quote below is from his bio on his own website; www.tjbrearton.com
“After fiddling around with college, pursuing a range of subjects including psychology and philosophy, Brearton went to film school and worked in industry for a few years. He’s also worked construction, demolition, carpentry, and bartending; he’s waited tables, managed a non-profit, and once cleaned the moss off tombstones. Now he lives in the Adirondacks with his wife and three children where he writes full time, takes out the trash, and competes with his kids for his wife’s attention.”
I have used this quote because it shows the life experience Brearton has. Like all the best authors he has lived a life, and brings a reality to his books.
He not only creates good characters but he can put the right fears and emotions into them. They make choices we would make, not always the best ones, and not always the right ones, but choices which are understandable, and justifiable.
In this book, the main protagonist discovers human remains in the grounds on his property. He helps the Police, he does everything expected of him, but he sees a chance. As a failed writer with an inquisitive mind he can’t help following up on the discovery in the hope of writing the elusive Best-Seller
I think I would probably have done the same thing.
That’s why I think this book is special.
This is my original review of Buried Secrets
A happy young couple, Brett and Emily, buy their dream small holding in upstate New York.
Digging an area of garden, close to the edge of some woods, Brett uncovers some human bones.
Meanwhile reformed criminal James Russo is arrested for failing to pay his fines for driving whilst uninsured. With no means of paying the fines he is sent to the famous Rikers Island Jail in New York. His cell mate is an ex mixed martial arts fighter Nate Reuter. Nate is in jail for being part of a lame group of bank robbers the press labelled “The fighting Bandits”
The Police Investigators seem to be going through the motions with the investigation into the buried bones but one of the Officers casually shows the mug shots of the Fighting Bandits to Brett, stating it’s an unrelated inquiry.
As a failed journalist/writer Brett sees an opportunity to resurrect his career and write a book and starts his own investigation. Unfortunately, he reaches out to his ex-girlfriend Meg to help him, much to Emily’s frustration; but is Meg really helping, or is she in it for her own gain, journalistic or personal.
In jail Reuter is attacked and Russo steps in to his aid. Because of the fight his jail time looks set to increase until a visit from a female prisoner changes everything. She will post his bail if he does one job for her, and just as an encouragement she sends a psychopath to his wife and daughter.
And so, begins a story which kept me thoroughly entertained from start to finish. The two storylines are obviously connected but how and why. Who do the bones belong to, and why are they buried with a cryptic note.
This story doesn’t hide anything, there are no surprises. Its hook is the naive innocence of Brett; the attempts of Russo to stay on the straight and narrow and still protect his wife and daughter; the conniving drive of Meg. To have captured all of these characters so well is a testimony the writing of T.J. Brearton
I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did.
I’m off now to start downloading his Brearton’s back catalogue