cover image Slow Burn: An Andy Hayes Mystery

Slow Burn: An Andy Hayes Mystery

Andrew Welsh-Huggins. Ohio Univ./Swallow, $26.95 (280p) ISBN 978-0-8040-1160-0

PI Andy %E2%80%9CWoody%E2%80%9D Hayes, a disgraced Ohio State quarterback, continues to struggle with both his occupation and his reputation in Welsh-Huggins%E2%80%99s convoluted follow-up to 2014%E2%80%99s Fourth Down and Out. Aaron Custer is in prison for life with no chance of parole after being convicted of setting a house fire that killed three O.S.U. students and seriously injured a fourth. Aaron, who was horribly drunk the night of fire, confessed to the crime, and plenty of evidence points to his guilt, including his loud argument with one of the victims shortly before the arson. Meanwhile, Dorothy Custer, Aaron%E2%80%99s grandmother, has learned from Aaron that a fellow inmate claims to know someone who knows who actually set the fatal fire. Dorothy hires Andy to track down this alleged eyewitness. In pursuit of the truth, Andy uncovers several sordid stories among the people he interviews while putting himself in grave danger. Andy gets a lot wrong before getting it right, but his dogged digging is fun to follow. (Apr.)