Deeper Than The Grave (A Tai Randolph Mystery)
By Tina Whittle
Tai Randolph is the owner of a gun shop in Atlanta that specializes in Civil War re-enactment relics along with run-of-the-mill firearms and ammo. Formerly owned by her Uncle Dexter, Tai has organized the inventory and has settled in, making the business profitable in the process.
Her boyfriend, Trey Seaver, has beefed up security for the shop. As a corporate security agent, and former FBI agent, he is obsessed with keeping Tai safe. She finds his security measures equally aggravating and endearing, but thinks he has crossed the line due to problems he has had in the past, including an accident, that has left him with a brain injury.
Tai admits the security is good to have around the shop as there have been several times her system has detected attempted breaches. She suspects the neighboring business owner, who is trying to run the gun shop out of business by any means possible, going as far as not allowing video surveillance in the alley because it is “her property”.
A storm is brewing, both figuratively and literally for Tai. A tornado rips through the area, causing untold damage to Kennesaw Mountain Cemetery, the final resting place for Braxton Amberdecker. The Civil War hero’s grave is damaged and his bones are missing. Tai and Trey are called upon to help locate them. When a skull is found by Tai, the search is called off, but the police are not happy. These remains cannot be those of Amberdecker, because a NASCAR belt buckle accompanies the bones.
The police suspect Tai, who starts digging for the truth with Trey’s reluctant help. When her dead Uncle Dexter if pulled into the investigation, she really heats up her search for the true killer, putting herself in more danger than she has bargained for. Deeper Than The Grave is Whittle’s fourth book in the Tai Randolph Mystery series.
I love the plot twists and energy that made me read “just one more chapter” every time I tried to put this book down. Tai is like a crazy friend you love to spend time with and Trey is vulnerable, edgy, and unpredictable all bundled into a gorgeous package. The two main characters interact beautifully together.
This is the first book I have read in the series. It worked as a stand-alone novel for me, but I hesitate to jump in with both feet saying it will work for everyone. Some questions remain unanswered as to what happened in the past with Trey’s accident as well as Tai and Trey’s relationship. This may bother some readers, but did not especially bother me. It is a solid, interesting story that leaves me wanting to know more, so I’ll go back and read the first two novels in this series to fill in the gaps. I looked at it as meeting someone new that was reluctant to share all of his or her past all at once, but as they became more comfortable, I learned more.
The other really great thing about this book is the last few pages of Author’s Notes. Whittle shares her Pinterest name (tinawh) where you can see her boards about the Civil War, Tai and Trey, Deeper Than the Grave Research and much more. If you are on Pinterest, I highly recommend searching her out to add another layer of interest to reading her books.
Copyright © 2014 Laura Hartman DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy that I can keep for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was not expected to return this item after my review.