Dead Sand is the first Lewis Cole mystery novel by Brendan DuBois. Dead Sand is not a particularly remarkable mystery but it makes for a good read. Lewis Cole is a retired government researcher living in Tyler, New Hampshire. Like any amateur gumshoe he has an in with the cops and an in with some muscle.
Dead Sand opens with the brutal murder of a young woman who was a summer waitress in the beach community of Tyler. Cole becomes curious and starts looking into it. A fisherman is then murdered after leaving a note telling Cole he knows something. When one of Cole’s friends disappears things get serious enough for him to get help from the local crime boss.
This is a decent enough story. Added to the mix in this first thriller in the series is the gradual revelation of Cole’s mysterious past and how he came to Tyler, New Hampshire.
This thriller’s weakness is you do not quite get engaged in the story and there is some padding.
DuBois also fails to make Tyler, New Hampshire original or memorable. This means his character doesn’t really inhabit the novel’s space and so cannot really come alive.