Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Last Call

Frank Weber has been a forensic psychologist for over 20 years. He is the Clinic Director of CORE professional Services. He has testified as an expert witness in numerous sexual assault and homicide cases. In addition Weber has visited every prison in the state of Minnesota performing psychological assessments. Weber's qualifications give him a unique understanding of forensic profiles of predators' thought processes, and the trauma of victims. He uses forensics in his books so people can learn a little about the science. Weber's background lends credibility to his writing as well as giving his characters authentic voices. Dark and graphic topics are covered in his book but appropriate for story content. 
Front and back cover photos taken in Pierz, MN with Elise Yates, model 

Weber writes mysteries all inspired by true crimes set in Minnesota towns. His first two books Murder Book and I-94 Murders and latest Last Call feature Jon Fredrick reprising his role of the neurotic obsessive protagonist. The book can be read as a stand alone without the reading of the prequels. Relevant information from previous books is skillfully woven into the third book. Last Call is based on a true story, the abduction of a young woman at a gas station in northern Minnesota. There are many aspects of Last Call similar to the Jayme Closs abduction in Wisconsin. Weber competently incorporates real life happenings and familiar Minnesota places in his writing.

Audrey Evans, 19, disappears in the dead of an arctic winter night after leaving her job at a convenience store in Brainerd, Minnesota. Investigator Jon Frederick is called into the investigation. He is not about to let Audrey end up being one of the 40,000 missing women in the US. Throughout the story Weber makes a concerted effort to humanize his characters rather than just focusing on the crime. He shows Audrey is a young woman who is trying to establish her identity and is capable of gritty resilience. Frederick is encased in a cloud of suspicion as a deceptive past lover puts his relationship with longtime love Serena in jeopardy. Frederick is wise yet vulnerable and loving. Serena is strong, compassionate, loving and protective. Clay, one of Frederick's friends, demonstrates a desire to rehabilitate himself. His loyalty to his friends is tested throughout the story.

Sinister acts of abduction and murder wreak havoc in a rural community forcing Fredrick to use his wits, knowledge of police work, cutting edge forensics and his own specially created algorithm to identify and catch a predator who is preying on the community. Weber employs his previous style from the first two books in Last Call. Each chapter seamlessly switches to a new perspective narrated by a different character with a clearly marked location. Readers are able to better understand each character's thoughts and motives as a series of events unfold. When Weber writes from the perpetrator’s perspective, the reader can better understand his motives, his reasoning and how he is able to justify hurtful behavior towards others. From the victim's perspective it becomes a chilling page turner as Audrey's heart wrenching words elicit impending doom. A myriad of characters challenge the reader to remain attentive throughout the story. A series of investigative clues develop into a cat and mouse guessing game hoping to stop the actions of the perpetrator and ultimately save the victim.

Last Call is aptly titled by Weber. According to the author he placed Jon Frederick in the last call scenario in the parking ramp, and in a bar scene at the end. Ken Daggett, the manager of the convenience store, was Audrey's last call.

Readers will find Last Call an intriguing, well crafted, chilling tale of murder. An abduction fueled with speculations, ulterior motives, plot twists and turns keeps the reader engaged right down to the last page.

Check out Frank Weber's website for more information on the author, his books and upcoming planned speaking engagements. http://frankweberauthor.com/

Lying Close is Book 4 planned in the Jon Frederick series. It will be available September 2020.

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