On Episode 123 of the GSMC Book Review Podcast I welcomed Tommy Carbone back to talk about his new book The Lobster Lake Bandits: Mystery at Moosehead. Tommy had first been on the podcast in July (Episode 94) to talk about his memoir, Growing Up Greenpoint. For his new book he switched from memoir to mystery and from Brooklyn to his adopted home state of Maine.
Nothing much really happens in the north woods, that is, until you mix seaplanes, poachers, game wardens, and strangers in a mystery at the lake.Three generations of the Parker family had grown up in the woods near Maine’s Lobster Lake. The Parkers knew the roads, trails, and lakes around their cabin better than anyone, except maybe the local game warden. It was always a peaceful and safe place. That all changed the year Joe Parker rescued a girl, the oddly dressed stranger stalked their woods, and the bandits caused some serious trouble.The Lobster Lake Bandits is the first book in the Moosehead Mystery series. (Source)
This book is absolutely a love letter to the north woods of Maine and definitely made me want to visit. I really liked the way Tommy wove the various timelines together, and how the flashbacks set up more of the story to come in the rest of the series. I was expecting a bit more of the more recent timeline (set in the 80s) with Joe and Sarah, but their relationship will be explored further as the series continues, which gives me something to look forward to.
If I had to choose one word to describe this book it would be layers: layers of mystery, layers of timelines, and layers of relationship. Each layer builds on the ones previous to create a rich story full of interesting secondary characters, likeable main characters, and a location that is a character in itself.
If you want to know more about Tommy Carbone and his books, you can find him in the following places:
Amazon Author Page: Tommy Carbone
GoodReads: Tommy Carbone
Tommy Carbone grew up in Greenpoint Brooklyn during the 1970s and early 80s. He roamed the avenues, hung out in candy stores playing pinball, and dodged cars chasing spaldeens. Brooklyn was then, as it is now, the “4th largest city” in America.He now writes from a one-room cabin, on the shore of a lake that is frozen for six months out of the year, and where moose outnumber people 3 to 1. (Source)