- Hardcover: 276 pages
- Publisher: Bancroft Press; First Edition edition (Nov. 1 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1890862290
- ISBN-13: 978-1890862299
- Product Dimensions: 15.7 x 2.2 x 24 cm
- Shipping Weight: 522 g
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #4,745,445 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
A Farewell to Legs: An Aaron Tucker Mystery Hardcover – Nov 1 2003
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The life of Aaron Tucker--freelance writer and stay-at-home dad--is anything but boring. In fact, Aaron manages to find himself in way more danger than your typical mild-mannered Jewish guy. In For Whom the Minivan Tolls (2002), he found missing persons, and now he lands in a murder investigation. When a leading conservative politician is found dead in his D.C. hotel room, discovered by his mistress after her long postcoital shower, the guy's ex (a former object of Aaron's affection) asks Aaron to find the killer. Aaron doesn't see himself as any investigating genius--he has his sights set on being a screenwriter--but he's also a pushover, so he takes the assignment, which doesn't sit well with his wife, nor does it make handling his demanding daughter and special-needs son any easier. Quirky, adorable, and downright funny, Aaron is a totally endearing antisleuth. Let's hope he keeps his screenwriting career on hold through a few more adventures. Mary Frances Wilkens
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Meanwhile, the principal of his kids' school has come to him for help. Someone has set off three stink bombs, and the parents are putting pressure on her to find the culprit. Only problem is, she has no clue where to start. As if that weren't enough, the Tuckers are also experiencing the joys of pet ownership. There's certainly never a dull moment in Aaron's life. But can he juggle it all and solve the mysteries?
There's certainly never a dull moment in the book either. Narrated first person with plenty of sarcasm and puns, I grinned, chuckled, and laughed my way through the entire book. You can't help but fall in love with the Tuckers. They are a wonderful, warm family who face life with a twinkle in their eye. The relationship between Aaron and his wife Abby is especially enjoyable. The plot starts a little slow, but gains speed the further you go in the book and has a few nice surprises before you reach the end. Being a conservative, I was a little put out by the "Liberal good, conservative bad" characterizations that popped up every so often, but I was able to shrug that off.
My real problem with the book was the timeline. Entire days seemed to drop off the face of the earth with no explanation. Characters agree to meet one day, then meet another and act like it's what the plans were all along. I kept flipping back in the book to make sure I hadn't missed something. It doesn't affect the plot, but it sure is annoying. A final edit for these things and a few paragraphs scattered throughout to fill in missing time would have fix the problem.
With that issue in mind, this is still an enjoyable book anyone will love. I will certainly be spending more time with Aaron and his family and friends.
Aaron Tucker is a happily married freelance reporter with something of a reputation for solving murders. The object of Aaron's teenage unrequited lust -- still a dish after 25 years -- asks him to investigate the murder of her husband. Known to Aaron and his buddies as Crazy Legs, the victim was a philandering and much-despised Washington lobbyist.
Snapdragon, a magazine that's "tired of being thought of as Rolling Stone's slow-witted cousin" offers to pay Aaron ten grand for a story on the murder. It's too good to pass up, even though he doesn't have a clue. He's watching the funeral on TV like everyone else.
Meantime, his daughter wants a pet lizard, someone is stalking his gorgeous wife, he's getting ominous phone calls, and the principal at Buzbee School wants him to find out who threw stink bombs into the girls' locker room, the boys' bathroom, and the gym.
Here's Cohen's description of the gym teacher: "Hester, the prototype for all gym teachers, was roughly 400 years old, and could still put me through a cinder block wall if the spirit moved her. She stood about six-foot-three, had triceps Arnold Schwarzenegger would find intimidating, and spoke in a voice high enough to qualify as a dog whistle."
The gym teacher I remember was short, wiry, and limber enough to be folded into a duffel bag, but Hester sounds familiar. That's the thing about the characters who make this story so funny -- either you know someone just like them, or you think you do.
I thought I had the murder mystery figured out. When Cohen sprung his surprise, I said, "Aw, gee," put the book down, and started laughing again. Then I got my can of deluxe mixed nuts out of the cupboard and finished reading the last few pages. Highly recommended!
-- Pat Browning, author of Full Circle, a Penny Mackenzie mystery.
Stephanie is as sexy as ever as she swivels her hips and puts on her Marilyn Monroe Academy Award smile. She says to Aaron that she heard he solves mysteries so would he look into the murder of her powerful DC lobbyist husband as the police believe she killed him over his extramarital affairs. Feeling like a time traveler back to his teen years when the school's sex siren gave him a hickey that was his only claim to fame and knowing that he is a writer Aaron fumblingly agrees. Soon he finds he is under assault to butt out or face the consequences, but he refuses and even expands his inquiries when side threats target his wife and a friend.
The sequel to the amusing FOR WHOM THE MINIVAN ROLLS, A FAREWELL TO ARMS, is as humorous as the first tale as the story line never takes itself seriously. The fine investigation is filled with twists and a few sidebar inquiries though all that jocularity takes away from the main mystery. Aaron remains a delight and the regulars add depth to his personality, but in this story sexy Stephanie provides the added oomph for a fun time for fans of jocular amateur sleuth tales.
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