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4.0 out of 5 stars A strong third mystery in the series, April 20 2004
By 
Debbie Lee Wesselmann (the Lehigh Valley, PA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Putt To Death (Paperback)
Roberta Isleib's PUTT TO DEATH, the third golf-lover's mystery after SIX STROKES UNDER and A BURIED LIE, follows the further adventures of Cassie Burdette. Cassie has taken a position as "touring pro" at a Connecticut private club to supplement her falling income as she struggles with her professional golf game. Less than twenty-four hours after she begins work, she discovers the body of one of the club's esteemed members floating in a water hazard. One murder sets the club on edge, but, when a second body is discovered, the members and staff fear for their safety. Naturally, our heroine Cassie is more curious than afraid, and, despite complicated personal issues that threaten to distract her, she buckles down to solve the mystery of the deaths.
Isleib's pacing is genre-smooth - never rushed, never bogged down with unnecessary detail. Cassie has become even more likable in this newest addition to the series as her emotional baggage begins to weigh more than her golf bags. She is a gutsy, human character. The returning characters from previous titles - Mike, Joe, Laura - are equally memorable. Unfortunately, the characters specific to this mystery are less clearly drawn; they are identified primarily by name and position and less by who they are as people. With the exception of Cassie's roommate Megan and club member Elizabeth, the characters blend into one another, thus making it difficult for the reader to grasp the role each plays.
Although the resolution requires far too much explanation than was adequately prepared for, the ride to get there is so much fun that it hardly matters. I couldn't put this book down. Easy to read and equally full of tense moments, this mystery makes great vacation or weekend reading. You don't need to read Isleib's previous efforts to enjoy this one, although it can't hurt.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Murder on a golf course, April 9 2004
By 
Dawn Dowdle "Mystery reviewer" (Lynchburg, VA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Putt To Death (Paperback)
Cassie Burdette is the new touring pro at Stony Creek Country Club on the Connecticut shoreline. The job description said she'd give lessons, schmooze with the members about the professional golf circuit and help out in the pro shop - in emergencies only. She'd hit some rough patches in the LPGA tour and her friend Laura had heard about this opening and pressed her to apply.
When Cassie arrives, she meets Scott Mallory, the club's pro and Richie, the assistant pro. She also meets Elizabeth Weigel, the president of the ladies' group. Cassie is asked to go to the board of directors meeting that night as Scott and Rich are committed to a Connecticut PGA Section dinner. Then she meets her suite mate, Megan Donovann
At the meeting, she meets many people. Brad Latham presents a proposal to pursue Audubon Sanctuary Certification at the club. This is not met with much agreement by the board. Then Elizabeth Weigel speaks to suggest the board revisit the club's policies regarding gender equality. None of the board is very supportive of her suggestions either.
The next day was the ladies' member-guest tournament. Cassie was stationed on the seventh tee. If a participant's tee shot reached the green, Cassie was to use their club to try to hit her own ball closer to the hole. If she couldn't do it, they got a sleeve of Lady Precept balls (hottest ball on tour). By mid afternoon, Cassie found herself still stuck at the seventh tee and she had an urgent need to pee. One foursome told her the next one had fallen a hole behind so she went behind some tall reeds to relieve herself. Then she discovers Brad Latham tangled in the underbrush. He was bloody. He had been beaten. He later dies on the way to the hospital.
Cassie wonders who would want him dead. True no one was supportive of his proposal at the board meeting, but could someone have killed him for that?
Many things start to happen. Then there is another death, this time of someone Cassie has gotten to know. She begins to really look into the members and who would have wanted these two people dead. She ends up putting herself and others in danger.
I am not a golf fan, but I loved this book. Cassie is a great character. She has a lot of spunk but yet she has weaknesses too. The many additional characters in this book are all well written and really add to the story. The setting is great too. Having so many different types of people coming together in the club setting, and have the controversies they do, make it hard to know who could have done it.
I look forward to reading more of her exploits in future books. I highly recommend this book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A very entertaining and clever mystery, April 7 2004
By 
Larry (Tampa, Florida) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Putt To Death (Paperback)
Cozy mysteries are usually not to my taste. So it was with some trepidation that I approached the third mystery by Roberta Isleib featuring Cassandra Burdette, professional golfer and amateur detective. I had problems with Roberta's first mystery, SIX STROKES UNDER. Specifically, I did not care for the character of Cassie and found it highly improbable that she would mentally be ready to attempt qualifying for the LPGA after being involved in the death of a fellow contestant. Pacing was also a bit of a problem. All of these issues have been successfully resolved as Roberta Isleib has written a very entertaining and clever mystery.
Cassie Burdette is hired as a touring pro at a country club in Connecticut, after floundering on her initial attempt to meet with success on the LPGA tour. One of her first duties requires her to stand on the tee of a par three hole challenging the foursomes passing through to hit the ball closer to the hole than herself. While waiting, she discovers a dead body in a patch of high grass. The police are called and it is soon afterwards that Cassie is told that one of her golf clubs were found near the body with blood on it. Cassie is therefore a suspect and now feels she must clear her name thereby giving her the excuse to try to figure out the cause of the death. After another dead body turns up, Cassie feels some real pressure especially when an attempt is made on her life.
My only real problem with this book is the need for a character list. It is difficult to keep track of who exactly is who. However, with some effort, the character identification falls into place and the pacing of the story picks up quite nicely. I appreciate the need for Cassie to investigate the murders with her own reputation at stake. The character of Cassie is much more fully realized and much more sympathetic and likable to this reader. Suspects come and go and when the true killer is revealed, the solution is both clever and unexpected. The bottom line- a very good job by Roberta Isleib and a strong contender for best PBO at the Agathas next year.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good mystery, April 6 2004
By 
This review is from: Putt To Death (Paperback)
Her first year in the LPGA was terrible and she didn't make the cut so Cassie Burdette takes a job as the touring pro at the Stony Creek Country Club. In addition, to having free room and a paying job, she can practice on the club's golf course whenever she has free time. Further sweetening the deal, she can take time off to play in LPGA tournaments and try to make the qualifying cut for the events.
On her first day on the job, she is ordered to attend the board of director's meeting where member Brad Latham wants the club to have Audobon Sanctuary Certification while Elizabeth Weigel wants women accorded the same privileges as the male members. Both people stir up a lot of resentment because they are disturbing the status quo. The next day on the golf course, Cassie finds Brad's body on the golf course. A few days later, a club employees digs up Elizabeth's murdered body. Cassie thinks there is a link between the two homicides and she looks to find it and by doing so she double bogies her life in danger.
Sports fans and amateur sleuth lovers will want to read PUTT TO DEATH, an exciting crime thriller that gives readers a thorough education on the world of golf. Readers also get a feel for what an exclusive country club is like especially the in politics and petty resentments. The heroine is obsessed with obtaining eagles, but that does not stop her from seeking justice.
Harriet Klausner
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5.0 out of 5 stars witty and suspenseful, June 7 2004
This review is from: Putt To Death (Paperback)
PUTT TO DEATH finds pro golfer Cassie Burdette on hiatus from the tour, working as a pro at a snooty Connecticut country club. When two outspoken club members turn up dead on Cassie's first week on the job, she has to work overtime to figure out who's zooming who, who can be trusted and who might be out to implicate her in the murders. Cassie's problems with her neglectful father, her almost-boyfriend, Mike, and her new shrink are just as suspenseful as the mystery. In fact, the personal and the mystery plots dovetail neatly to provide a clever and satisfying ending. As always, the writing in this series is witty and full of pithy observations of human, and golfer, behavioir.
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Putt To Death
Putt To Death by Roberta Isleib (Paperback - April 5 2004)
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