Book review: Murder in Ocean Hall by Joe Flood
Author’s summary: When the world’s most famous explorer is murdered at the Smithsonian, it’s up to a cynical Washington detective to solve the case.
Bob Fundwell dies in the Smithsonian’s Ocean Hall when the life-size replica of a whale falls from the ceiling and crushes him.
A veteran black investigator, Detective Thomas, is assigned the case. He’s witnessed two decades of bloody mayhem on the streets of our nation’s capital.
The list of suspects is long, for the victim was arrogant and reviled. Fundwell discovered the Gigantic, a legendary ocean liner that sank in the Atlantic after hitting an iceberg. He became rich and famous by falsely claiming the work of his colleagues.
As Thomas investigates the case, he is lied to by people at all levels – from housing projects to the Supreme Court. Deceit is the one constant in a Washington on the eve of the 2008 election. Yet, he presses on, determined to find justice and prove that the city has changed since its days as the murder capital of the country.
Murder in Ocean Hall is inspired by true events, including the real-life controversy over the discovery of the Titanic, as well as the author’s two decades in Washington, DC. This fact-based murder mystery takes you behind the scenes of our nation’s dysfunctional capital, revealing the real city beyond the monuments.
- Book cover – 4 points – good but not great
- Cohesive storyline – 5 points –
- Spelling/Grammar/Punctuation (SGP) – 4 points – misspelled words, missing punctuation, missing words
- Character development – 5 points
- Credibility – 4 points – I had some issues with the “voices” of Detective Thomas, his wife and his son. In their speaking parts, the author seemed to be trying too hard to make them “talk black,” but they just came off as uneducated, which doesn’t fit the socioeconomic status the author placed them in. It wasn’t horrible, but it was off-putting.
- OVERALL: This was a good read. I’d recommend it to others.