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Saturday, December 28, 2013

Review - Things in Ditches - Jimmy Olsen

A Review by Carol

Book – Things in Ditches
Author – Jimmy Olsen
Publication Date – Not listed
Type – Stand Alone
Genre – Romance, Suspense
Rating – 4 out of 5 Stars


A murder mystery novel. The story of Phillip "Dutch" Cleland, a man with a hidden past and a future about to explode in his face. A seemingly average man whose love for two women drives him to such extremes that deception, even murder and suicide are not longer unthinkable.

When a lovely corpse is discovered near Dutch's home town, the nearby ditches begin to yield a harvest of secrets, none of them comforting for Dutch. Soon he is forced to flee for his life, before his past and the police slip a noose around his neck.

Things In Ditches is peopled with small town characters that are so humorous and eccentric, their oddball antics enliven every paragraph and page. A reader can't help but be reeled in by the strange citizens of Willow River, until soon discovering they're really not so different from all of us and Dutch's story is the oldest story on earth; good and evil, betrayal and laughter. And finally, the power of love and friendship, forging one man's determination to overcome all odds, even death.


I was pleasantly surprised; I liked this book as much as I did….that is once I got past the first 20-30%.  See, in the beginning, I was confused – the author threw out so many names that I kept getting confused on who was who and how they fit in the story…but he did such a fantastic job of describing little idiosyncrasies of each character that it wasn’t long before I felt right at home!

I loved how the author took us on a fantastic journey while continuing to put little humorous parts in to keep the murder mystery light and enjoyable.


This is a story of Dutch who is suspected of murdering his “mistress” from the past.  This murder starts the domino effect around the town.  We flip-flop from the present to the past to explain the connection between the murdered woman and Dutch.

Between Dutch trying to run away to safety, the town cop, Dutch’s wife and his friend, the lawyer, we are taken through a roller coaster ride of “who-dunit”. 

But it’s the ending that really grabs you and at that moment, you will be slapping yourself on the forehead, never expecting the solution!

Wrap Up

This is a surprising and pleasing murder mystery book with a hint of romance and humor thrown in. I loved how small this town was and how the author incorporated a mix of different personalities to tie the story all in together.

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