Ted Haynes | Fiction, 2020
Erik Peterson is a very skilled skier. So, how did he end up dead in a tree well on Mt. Bachelor under four feet of snow? And who was that man with the Norwegian chullo hat who joined Erik, riding up the hill with him on the Red Chair lift, in February 1966?
The story expands, and murder becomes the conclusion, with no apparent motive. We soon learn of connections all over Bend, and also with Norway and WWII.
The mystery is engaging, though the denouement is perhaps more complicated than it need be. The characters are interesting, especially as we follow Erik’s daughter Lisbeth and her best friend Sally from the fateful day in 1996, when they were skiing with Mr. Peterson, through 50 years, until the mystery is finally solved.
However, the writing is rather amateurish. I don’t know quite how to explain my assessment ... it is just rather simplistic.
If you are a Bender, you may enjoy this book, as I did, for its considerable integration of Bend sites, from the mills, to Hosmer Lake, to Bend High, to Wall Street, which was, in earlier days, definitely NOT tony. If Bend is not a place you know and love, you might want to skip this novel. There are certainly better-written murder mysteries
That being said, Hayne’s newest book, The Mirror Pond Murders, just arrived for me at the library, and I am going to give him another try. I was entertained, certainly, by The Mt. Bachelor Murders.