A Shot in the Bark – “Youdunit”

December 5, 2013

A Shot in the Bark by C.A.Newsome

Shot in the Bark

It is hard to write a review of this book without giving away something that would ruin it for the reader. I’m not talking about who the murder is or how the couple who have bickering throughout the novel finally get together at the end. But something that is a complete surprise. Once you know it you will never forget it nor will you ever want to read another book by this author again. All I can say is that it speaks directly to the process of writing and reading. And I am going to tell you what that is.

These are people who walk their dogs at a park each morning. One of them is murdered and, toward the end, another is killed too. The police investigator suspects it must be someone who is part of the dog walkers. So he joins them, and in the process falls in love with one of the girlfriend of the first victim. So far so good. There are alternate chapters by the killer on what constitutes a perfect crime. About three quarters of the way through the book, I started to wonder who the perpetrator was. To be honest I didn’t care about any of the characters that much. And so in the next to last chapter when it was revealed who the murder was, I thought, so what. She is committed and refuses to speak. So what!

Then in the Epigraph we discover she might not have been the killer, but bi-polar. So who is it? Who murders people and gets away with it? The person writing the book, that’s who. I didn’t put it all together until four or five hours after reading the book. The author. The reader. The author. We literally eliminate characters, and literally we get away with it. The perfect crime.

4 out of 5


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