Category Archives: Strunk, O. C.

O. C. Strunk. Satan’s Angels. Baltimore, MD: Publish America, 2009.

Matthew Glass has settled in nicely to the beach house that his friend Christopher Fry left him in An Ever-Fixed Mark.  It’s a comfortable place and Matthew is feeling a sense of peace until one morning he discovers that a young woman’s body has washed up next to his dock.  Matthew is not looking forward to interacting with the local sheriff, a man who Matthew tangled with when he investigated Christopher Fry’s death. Surprisingly, Sheriff Gore seems to have buried the hatchet, and rather than suspecting Matthew of the murder, he only asks Matthew to keep him informed if he learns anything about the case.

Of course, Matthew does not do that.  He delays telling the sheriff that he has met with an older Hispanic man who asked about the woman’s appearance, and he tries to keep the authorities from learning about the activities of the wife of one of his friends.  Belita, the wife of Father Mark Wyatt, an Episcopal priest in North Myrtle Beach, has been letting undocumented workers on their way north stay in a cottage that the couple owns in Sunset, North Carolina.  Readers come to find out that the dead woman and two friends stayed in the cottage, on their way to a modeling school in Wilmington.  When Matthew looks into the modeling school, he learns from Sheriff Gore that the school might be a front for shadier activities, but neither the sheriff nor Matthew is prepared for the connection between the school and one of the most admired citizens in the area.

This is a book with timely themes–Hispanic immigration, celebrity culture–and much older ones–the innocence of youth, the exploitation of the weak, and the urge for vengeance.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

Leave a Comment

Filed under 2000-2009, 2009, Brunswick, Coast, Mystery, New Hanover, Novels in Series, Strunk, O. C.

O. C. Strunk. An Ever-Fixed Mark. Baltimore: Publish America, 2007.

Matthew Glass, psychologist and former university administrator, moved to North Carolina after the death of his wife and daughter.  He’s opened up a cafe and a bookstore in the coastal town of Calabash, and there he connects with a diverse group of people: Tomeka who cooks at the cafe; Tizzy who runs the bookstore; Micki, a college-age Korean orphan whom Matthew intends to adopt; and Christopher Fry, a retiree who befriends Matthew.

As this novel opens, Christopher has just died, in what appears to be an accident. When Christopher’s long-estranged daughter arrives to make funeral plans, Matthew is in for a few surprises: Christopher has left Matthew his house and his dog, and the circumstances of Christopher’s death don’t square with the cautious and precise man that Matthew knew.  As Matthew spends time at his new house he gets a better sense of Christopher’s professional achievements and his compassion, and he uncovers some puzzling things: a stash of the local community newspaper with strange marking on some of the papers and books on the animal-human bond.  With Micki’s help, Matthew follows the clues in Christoper’s things, but those clues lead to cruelty, corruption, and murder, not the treasure that Micki expected.

This is the second book in the Matthew Glass Mysteries.  The first book was set in Maine.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

Leave a Comment

Filed under 2000-2009, 2007, Brunswick, Coast, Mystery, Novels in Series, Strunk, O. C.