February 16, 2015

What the Fly Saw Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for What the Fly Saw by Frankie Bailey! I'll be sharing my review of the book today - and don't forget to enter the giveaway!

What the Fly Saw (Detective Hannah McCabe #2)
Author: Frankie Bailey
Genre: Mystery
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Publisher: Minotaur Books


Albany, New York, January 2020 (parallel universe)

The morning after a blizzard that shut down the city, funeral director Kevin Novak is found dead in the basement of his funeral home. The arrow sticking out of his chest came from his own hunting bow. A loving husband and father and an active member of a local megachurch, Novak had no known enemies. His family and friends say he had been depressed because his best friend died suddenly of a heart attack and Novak blamed himself. But what does his guilt have to do with his death? Maybe nothing, maybe a lot. The minister of the megachurch, the psychiatrist who provides counseling to church members, or the folksy Southern medium who irritates both men—one of these people may know why Novak was murdered.  Detective Hannah McCabe and her partner, Mike Baxter, sort through lies and evasions to find the person who killed their “Cock Robin,” But McCabe is distracted by a political controversy involving her family, unanswered  questions from another high-profile case, and her own guilt when a young woman dies after McCabe fails to act.  

What the Fly Saw is an intriguing and thrilling mystery novel that will have readers on the edge of their seats. It's technically the second book in a series, but I believe it can be read as a standalone. I haven't read the first book and I had no problems with the second whatsoever. Our heroine, Hannah McCabe, is a great female lead. She's smart, strong - both physically and mentally, tough, and a devoted and hard working detective - and those are only some of her attributes. Like anyone, Hannah has her fears and weaknesses - which test her at every bend and threaten to take over her life at times. I connected with Hannah pretty quickly in the novel and could definitely empathize with her throughout the novel. 

The plot of the story was fascinating, especially due to the fact that there are so many smaller story lines happening at the same time. For example, the main plot line is the murder of the funeral director Novak, and the novel focuses on this aspect of the story for the greater part of the book. There are several smaller things happening to the characters - especially Hannah - while she's investigating the main murder. She's dealing with a political controversy involving her family, which is stressful enough on its own, and when Hannah learns of the death of a young woman, she's full of guilt and believes she could have saved her. On top of all these other situations, Hannah is struggling with unanswered questions from another high profile case. All of these smaller situations build up and intertwine with one another - as well as the main plot of the book - to create a complex and sophisticated murder mystery. I found the writing to be well done with fantastic visual imagery and detailed descriptions of everything - to the point where I could easily imagine myself alongside Hannah during the story. The book is fast paced and the mystery behind everything gives it an even greater edge - so the reader will be eagerly reading as fast as they can to see what will happen next and who the killer is. The author threw in lots of unforeseen twists and turns, which is a great addition to the story itself and makes for an altogether deeper plot. I definitely recommend this book to fans of the genre as well as anyone who enjoys suspense, thrillers, action, adventure, and police/crime fiction. Like I said, you don't need to read the first book in the series beforehand - it can be read as a standalone. I'll definitely be going back to read the first book while awaiting the release of the next installment.

Frankie Y. Bailey is a mystery writer and a professor in the School of Criminal Justice, University at Albany (SUNY). Her academic research focuses on crime history, popular culture/mass media, and material culture. She has done research and written about topics ranging from local history and women who kill to African American characters in crime and detective fiction. She is currently at work on a book about dress, appearance, and criminal justice. She is the author of two mystery series, featuring crime historian Lizzie Stuart, and Albany police detective Hannah McCabe. Frankie is a past executive vice president of Mystery Writers of America and a past president of Sisters in Crime. A dog lover, she now shares her home with a Maine Coon cat/mix named Harry. 

Giveaway: (5) Copies of What the Fly Saw by Frankie Bailey - US Only!



  1. I've read some of this author's earlier books but have yet to start this series. Sounds like it should be on my TBR stack! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on it with us.

  2. Thanks for hosting me on my virtual book tour. I really appreciate the thorough and thoughtful review.