The ‘crime fictionista’ strikes again! Goodbye Noel by Nike Chillemi starts with a bang and never lets up. This is the second in Chillemi’s ‘Sanctuary Point’ Series – mystery crime stories set in a small, post WW II American town. This installment takes place right after Christmas when a young mother is found dead under her Christmas tree. Katrina Lenart, a maternity nurse who happens to stumble upon the scene, is given temporary custody of the orphaned infant while Inspector Ian Daltry investigates the murder. The case turns out to be anything but a simple homicide as the twists and turns just keep coming. To complicate matters further, the Inspector and Nurse Lenart find themselves falling in love.
I enjoyed reading this book and plan to read the rest of the series. Chillemi has a fresh, bold writing style that is easy to read but also has depth. The author has done an excellent job of making the characters sound authentic for the time period. As well, the story never lags as new elements keep cropping up in the case, making the resolution, when it finally occurs, a genuine surprise. Even though this is book two, Goodbye Noel stands firmly on its own and the fact that it takes place over the holiday season should not deter readers from enjoying it at any time, so don’t wait until next Christmas to read it. I highly recommend this novel to those that like a good crime story. Well done.