Disclosure. This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free. All opinions are my own.
I have received a free e-copy of the book Why Me? Chimeras, Conundrums and Dead Goldfish by Charlotte Stuart to review. You may find out more about Charlotte on her website.
Here is the book blurb.
In ancient Greece, the chimera was a bad omen. In WHY ME? it’s a motive for murder.
Seattle consultant, Bryn Baczek, is vacationing in Scotland, hiking alone in a downpour, surrounded by midges, when she sees a body at the bottom of a ravine. Before she can return to the scene with the mountain rescue team, the body of the scientist disappears, along with the laptop containing his cutting-edge research.
Rumors that Bryn has the scientist’s laptop make her a target of both legal and illegal businesses that want to make fistfuls of money by growing customized human organs in animal chimeras.
Well the title and the cover of this book certainly drew me in, even though I had no idea what a chimera was before reading it.
The story starts with Bryn on holiday alone in Scotland, due to best friend Sophie cancelling at the last minute. She is following Sophie’s planned remote hike in torrential rain, plagued by midges, when she spots a body way below her at the bottom of a ravine. She scrambles down but the man is dead. From his wallet, she discovers his name Jared Blaine and coincidentally that he is also from Seattle, like her. But a noise spooks her and she leaves the scene, before returning with mountain rescue. However the body has disappeared and the mountain rescue team aren’t convinced whether to believe her or not, although she makes friends with Fiona, one of the team.
But Bryn knows what she saw and is determined to investigate the mystery herself, firstly in Scotland, where things just don’t add up, and then back home in Seattle, where she ropes in neighbour Logan. They discover that Jared was a biomedical scientist. Coincidences abound, faces keep cropping up, and before long, she finds herself a target. Someone thinks she has Jared’s laptop. What length will they go to?
This is a great story, a light-hearted mystery with some thriller elements and plenty of red herrings to throw you off track. Plus it is fun too, with Bryn living on a boat with her mad cat.
And finally, chimera is a genetic term which rather than attempt to explain, I shall point you in the direction of the Wikipedia definition. And the Greek reference in the blurb is because in Greek mythology, a chimera is a hybrid creature, part lion, part goat and part snake. Chimera research is highly controversial, as it has the potential to save lives though biomedical treatments but raises serious bioethical questions.
Why Me? Chimeras, Conundrums and Dead Goldfish is available on Amazon in both kindle format and paperback. A good mystery, with some great twists.