cover image Back on Murder: A Roland March Mystery %E2%80%A8

Back on Murder: A Roland March Mystery %E2%80%A8

J. Mark Bertrand, read by Mel Foster. Brilliance Audio, unabridged, 11 CDs, 13 hrs., $14.99 ISBN 978-1-4558-6346-4

Mel Foster delivers winning narration in this audio edition of Bertrand's mystery novel about burned-out Houston police detective Roland March's quest to solve two seemingly unrelated cases: the disappearance of the teenage daughter of deceased mega-church pastor and a gang shooting on the wrong side of the tracks. As he works the two cases, March must also confronts his own emotional baggage and work to rebuild both his career and his marriage. Foster perfectly captures the author's larger-than-life world: gritty law enforcement digs, mean streets, affluent suburban enclaves, evangelical congregations. Foster's attention to character traits and dialect makes for an across-the-board satisfying listening experience; he manages to evoke place and identity without descending into stock caricatures. Several depictions stand out in particular, including the charming but steely female head of the city's missing persons unit and the gruff, chain-smoking local medical examiner, who happens to be March's brother-in-law. Foster also provides an especially effective rendering of a devoted%E2%80%94if sometimes overly eager%E2%80%94youth pastor who joins March's investigation. A Bethany House paperback. (Mar.)