The Fall Guy
by Barbara Fradkin
Handyman Cedric O'Toole likes his simple life. He lives by himself on a hardscrabble farm, collecting sheds full of junk and dreaming of his next invention. Then one day a slick city lawyer drives down his lane and his nightmare begins. Lori-Anne Wilkins, the wife of a wealthy local businessman, has fallen to her death from a deck Cedric built, and the furious widower has slapped him with a lawsuit.
When Cedric goes to check out the accident site, he discovers that someone has tampered with the railing around the deck. It appears he's been set up to take the blame. But who might want Mrs. Wilkins dead? Then, when someone runs him off the road, he realizes that his life is in danger too. To clear his name and save his life, Cedric has to use his inventive mind to trap the real killer.
Reading Level: 4.0
Pub Date: April 1, 2011
- About the author
Barbara Fradkin is a child psychologist with a fascination for how we turn bad. Her compelling short stories haunt numerous magazines and anthologies, but she is best known for her two series of gritty, psychological detective novels, one featuring Ottawa Police Inspector Michael Green and the more recent one with foreign aid worker Amanda Doucette. Barbara won Arthur Ellis Best Novel Awards for both Fifth Son (2005) and Honour Among Men (2007). Barbara’s work as a school psychologist helping adolescents and younger children, many of whom struggled with reading, has also made her a strong advocate of programs that help to develop reading as a lifelong passion. She has written three Rapid Reads novels featuring a country handyman turned reluctant sleuth. For more information, please visit barbarafradkin.com.
CM Magazine—March 4, 2011
"Fradkin does a nice job in combining the elements of a good murder mystery with the telling of the story through Rick's character...Constant tension between the narrator and the world around him is one of the novel's greatest strengths...Though The Fall Guy is an easy read targeted at adult readers, it could work in a grade 11 or 12 literature class, particularly the workplace stream. The novel deals with the themes of stereotypes and class-bias that could prove useful for discussion. It also deals with how different people with different intellectual capacities use language to construct meaning, which would also prove useful for discussion. Recommended."