A Sally Freberg Mystery
If ever there was an underrated book, this is it, and Norm blames himself. Despite the great premise of Sour Notes, the cast of remarkable characters such as German shepherd Karl Marx and sexy, sixtyish Sally Freberg, and the amazing, double-twisty ending, Norm went straight to AuthorHouse. He self-published this winner instead of marketing it to agents and traditional publishers. His comment on that decision: “Oy.”
Hip ailments guided that misstep, because Norm thought he was literally on his last legs and wanted to see this in print before, well— Turns out with the correct regimen of barbecued ribs and exercise (he swims), this guy will probably live forever. About the Norwegian-American piano-teaching Sally, whose crime-solving is rooted in knowledge of operatic plots, visualize (if you’re old enough) salt-and-pepper-crowned Barbara Rush in Forty Karats. Sally’s roomie is the heavyweight Bianca Russo, whose Mediterranean earthiness brings chuckles.
Sour Notes romps from Kansas City to Santa Fe in pursuit of killers of Henry Decker, sweet-natured archeologist whom no one would ever find reason to bump off. The man’s pueblo digs are the scene of action that imperils our gal Sal, but there’s rescue and resolution in order that Norm might craft a sequel. In fact one is in the works, called Disharmony. We all need to know whether eightyish anthropologist and widower boyfriend Ben Novak will return to Sally after going off in a huff, and we need to know how KC Police Detective Rachel Rosenberg’s marriage to vaquero Manuel Rivera is working out.
The Sally character was the invention of coauthor Bethine Louise of Lee’s Summit, MO, who said she’s too busy grandmothering to be back for the sequel. (“Surprise me.”)
Sour Notes could be another candidate for future blogging in serial form. If you’re for that, raise your hand.