Detroit Karen
by Kenny Chadwick

"Eddie reached over and pushed her down until her head went under. She didn’t struggle. After what seemed a couple of minutes, she jerked twice, and a big bubble came out of her mouth. She was gone."

Joe Tanner, a long-haul trucker, is having a typical day when he meets Karen Brown and her son, Jack, at a truck stop. They are down on their luck. Karen's husband has died, and although she was going to divorce him, it still is a difficult time. They have decided to move to Florida to be with Karen's sister, but along the way, they have run out of money. Being a great guy, Joe helps Karen out financially and eventually falls in love with her. Karen has had a couple of run-ins with a "gang of thugs" in Detroit and is glad to move away from them, especially their leader, Mr. Black. However, he seems to have friends in high places, gets out of jail, and pursues Karen to Florida, where she gets kidnapped by a hired killer and rapist named Eddie. However, Joe also has a friend in high places and reveals himself to be something other than he has previously presented. But can he save the day?

In this novel of trauma, love, and retribution, readers learn about the everyday life of Joe, Karen, Jack, and their family and friends. It is an easy book to enjoy and is also a quick read for those who don't want heavy mysteries. It reveals the goodness of some people and the evil of others while leaving out a decision on whether the behaviors of Karen and Joe are justified or whether it is vigilantism. The novel is a basic, straightforward read, although the dialogue is often stilted. However, it does tell an interesting tale of human drama, and most readers will likely be engaged by it. The ending helps the reader to understand the protagonists' relationship, Karen's moxie, and how she is truly "Detroit Karen."

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