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by Mike Stewart

Berkley Mystery, 2001 (291 pages) $5.99
ISBN: 0-425-517887-0

Reviewed by Rick McMahan

Mike Stewart makes his writing debut with his mystery, SINS OF THE BROTHER . Stewart's novel does not take place in a foreign land or an exotic and lavish land. SINS OF THE BROTHER centers on Cooper's Bend, Alabama, a small river town. Tom McInnes has moved away from Cooper's Bend and his strong-willed father cum sawmill owner and small town big shot. However, Tom McInnes is called back from his law practice when someone ambushes and kills his brother on the murky river at night. As he delves deeper into whom his brother had become, Tom McInness has to face a truth that his younger brother, Hall McInness, was no longer the innocent boy he grew up with, but rather a drug dealer with a vicious streak in him. There are plenty of people who had reason to put a bullet into Hall.

Tom McInness' investigation of his brother's death takes Tom into the underbelly of crime, drug dealers, southern organized crimes and men without much chance of a future taking the only path to make it in the world, even if the path they chose is illegal and dangerous. Stewart's writing is full of plenty of twists and turns as the current pulls the reader along. Hopefully, SINS OF THE BROTHER marks the long start of Tom McInness' tales.

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