4 out of 4 stars
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Will, who owned PT Marketing with his partner and friend Robby, was in an important business meeting when he got the message that his father, Abe, had passed away. Abe owned a funeral home in Sandusky, Ohio. After going home, Will finds out from his sister that something had not been right with their father for some time, and she didn’t believe he died naturally.
Will inherited the funeral home, and while examining the books, he noticed the business had dropped off significantly over the last two years. He discovered his father had taken a life settlement to help keep the business afloat. A life settlement is when someone sells their life insurance policy to a third party at a significantly reduced price to cover their bills. When that person dies, the third party makes a huge profit from the transaction. One of the funeral home’s customers, whose father had recently died, mentioned that her father also had a life settlement policy.
Will has a gambling problem, and while at a Gamblers Anonymous meeting, he encountered a man who was an insurance salesman. When asked about life settlements, he decided to investigate. He found that many life settlements were being bought in Sandusky and about half were bought from minorities. Robby, who is black, came to visit Will for emotional support. Robby pointed out to him that almost no minorities were seen anywhere they went.
Will finds clues that lead him to believe there is a dark conspiracy going on in Sandusky. Seeking the truth will put Will, his family, and friends in danger.
The Will to Die by Joe Pulizzi is a mystery/crime drama told from Will’s point of view. Each chapter has a heading that hints at what is coming in that chapter. Because the author has owned a marketing company and is knowledgeable about it, he makes the story believable. Having written several business books previously, this is his first mystery. I think he did a magnificent job with this novel.
The beginning was slow as the groundwork was laid for the story and the funeral took place. If I had to select something that could be improved, it would be the beginning, which perhaps had a little too much information about the funeral. This was a minor issue, though, and did not significantly interfere with my enjoyment of the book. Then, about halfway through the story, the action picks up, and the novel roars to a suspenseful finish. The thrilling action in the second half of the book is my favorite aspect.
The writing is easy to understand, plausible, and flows smoothly from one point to the next. All the questions are answered by the end.
Since the story is depicted from Will’s point of view, we get to perceive how he thinks and feels, and this makes it easy to bond with him. His character is well developed. He struggles with weaknesses, especially of being an addicted gambler. However, Will is brave and tries to utilize his ability to think swiftly on his feet in order to survive. He is likable and credible.
I only detected a few minor errors, mostly with missing commas. Therefore, I believe this book is professionally edited.
This mystery is eloquently written and has a suspenseful second half. I found it difficult to put down. Because it is also well edited, The Will to Die achieves a rating of 4 out of 4 stars. Readers who like crime dramas and suspense novels would appreciate this book. A few profanities were seen; therefore, it is not appropriate for young children.
The Will to Die
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