In 2010, American Christian Fiction Writers announced that Tim Downs would be the keynote speaker at the annual conference in Indianapolis. I must admit when I heard this, I was a little concerned because I had never heard of this author. (I really don’t know where I had been.) Anyway, I decided if I was going to hear this man speak, I needed to educate myself about him by reading one of his books. On kindle two of his books were being sold for the price of one, and I ordered Chop Shop and Shoofly Pie. I had read the hero was a forensic entomologist. Bugs? I didn’t know if I could do that, especially since the bugs would be on dead bodies.
Once I started reading, though, I couldn’t put it down, and I inhaled both books and ordered more. By the time I arrived at conference I had read all five of his Bug Man books plus his Christy Award Winner PlagueMaker.
Downs has created a character in Nick Polchak that defies description. He is an intelligent man who has trouble identifying with the human race and immerses himself in the ordered world of insects. He has few friends because he’s not good with relationships. Downs played this up well in the fifth book, Ends of the Earth, by ending with a cliffhanger. Readers had to go to his blog to vote on how the book should end which would give him the direction for book six.
When the conference opened last September, Tim Downs spoke at the first meeting. At dinner I was surprised when I sat down to see him already seated at the table. My first words to him were something like, “If I could have gotten my hands on you when I read that last page.” He assured me that I wasn’t the only one upset. He did say, however, the ending I chose was the most popular one and was leading him into book six. Now that book’s out. The only problem is, the ending left me wondering how I’m going to survive a year wondering what he’s going to do in the next book.
If you haven’t read any of the Bug Man books, I highly recommend them. If you like a fast paced mystery with a quirky hero and a surprise ending, you’ll love Nick of Time. It has a plot twist I never would have suspected, and I found myself laughing out loud at times. It’s a great read!
What have you read lately that you enjoyed so much you couldn’t put it down? I’d like to know.