Tag Man Review
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The wealthy people of Brattleboro, Vermont, think they’re safe behind their locked doors, with an expensive alarm system keeping intruders out—or are they? Someone starts breaking in and wandering about their houses. He eats a bit of food and watches them sleep. Then he places a sticky note somewhere, which simply says “You’re it.” However, some of those well-off people harbor dark secrets, and they’re willing to kill to keep them under wraps.

On one of his frequent break-ins, Tag Man discovers evidence of a gruesome crime. His passage through the house does not go unnoticed, and he soon finds himself on the run. As he tries to stay one step ahead of his pursuers—and the police—he searches for clues to help him figure out who might have committed such a horrific crime.

Joe Gunther has spent the last few months struggling to recover from a personal loss. It’s not been an easy road, but he offers to help the VBI (Vermont Bureau of Investigation) hunt for Tag Man, whose case may have tie-ins with a murder investigation. The deeper into the search Joe gets, the more bizarre things become.

With its likeable and mild-mannered antihero, Tag Man is the best Joe Gunther mystery I’ve read thus far. However, if you think too deeply about what Tag Man is doing, you might find him to be a bit creepy. No matter how harmless it may be, the thought of being watched by a stranger while you sleep should give you chills up and down your spine—I know it did for me! Still, as he struggles to stay alive, you can’t help but root for him because he’s just slightly disturbed and not psychotic.

Joe Gunther’s character once again shows readers a hard-working and savvy investigator. His emotions over the tragedy in his life are realistic, but they’re not so dramatic that you’ll wish that he’d get over it already. Instead, you’ll feel his loss—and you’ll know he’ll recover given time.

With a baffling mix of clues and seemingly separate cases crisscrossing all over the place, Tag Man delivers a thrilling head-spin that will keep you off-balance right up until the end. Dark and somewhat skewed, it’s an excellent mystery with a suspenseful edge—and I can’t wait to see what comes next in the Joe Gunther series.

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