Proof Positive, the twenty-fifth Joe Gunther mystery novel by Archer Mayor, is one of the really good ones. Archer Mayor’s series is somewhat uneven but he is firing on all cylinders with Proof Positive.

Ben Kendall, a Vietnam vet and hoarder, is found buried under an avalanche of his stuff. This might have gone down as no big deal except his ex-wife is later found tortured to death and another body is found in the house. It seems Kendall’s death is related to a current exhibition of some of his photography. Most pictures are of stuff at interesting angles but a small part of it is of pictures he took while in country.

The bodies start piling up as two mysterious and very clever men are going around trying to find something for their boss. Joe Gunther and his team are soon on the case and Gunther has to match wits with the leader of the two mysterious men.

Archer Mayor keeps his mystery novel moving at a solid pace and never loses the reader’s interest. The plot is complex and features quite a few secondary characters but Mayor manages to keep everything tight and easy to follow. This is not something that can always be said about Archer Mayor.

Proof Positive is an excellent mystery novel set in Vermont and New England. Readers will enjoy it along with the local color Mayor sometimes provides. The final gotcha is a bit much though.

Proof Positive
A Joe Gunther Mystery
Archer Mayor
Minotaur Books 2014

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