Regina Cutter had it all and then it was gone. Her wealthy husband dumped her in favor of a trophy wife and suddenly her years of effort, sacrifice and support for his career and their marriage didn’t matter. Gone were the club memberships, the private plane, and all the other perks and trappings of wealth and power. But, she still had her paranormal ability.

She went back to Boston and moved into her recently departed Aunt’s home. She shares custody of her Aunt Jo’s dog, affectionately known as “Biscuit,” with a rough character that rides a Harley and goes by the name Stark. And just like her Aunt did for years, she unofficially consults with the Boston Police Department in the form of Detective Frank Devaney. As the novel begins, he has a strange case for her.

Devaney, pressured for a quick arrest and conviction, may have sent an innocent man to prison for a murder he did not commit. The victim was Peter Wald, the son of a very prominent politician. The accused killer was Henry Fraiser; a man with no connections and who still to this day claims to be innocent. He may very well have been nothing more than the wrong man in the wrong place at the time. The crime happened years ago during the cocaine years when crime was out of control, the police were overworked and stressed, and everything no matter how small turned into deadly violence. Initially, Regina does not pick up anything and then as he goes to leave, she gets a sensation that is almost to the point of an image for her which gives Devaney an idea to pursue.

But, Regina isn’t content to just tell the good detective what she sees and feels. Before long, she is actively sticking her nose into the case, asking questions of everyone and walking the old neighborhood where the crime took place. At the same time, she is also assisting a good friend of hers that sold a house that may or may not be haunted. The buyers are not happy and are very well connected and the outcome of their unsatisfaction could be a financial disaster for all involved. And then, what about the weird scuffling sound Regina heard in the thick fog the other night? Was a man attacked?

Author Cecelia Tishy (also the author of the Kate Banning mystery series) pulls the various threads all together in a Sue Grafton style work and creates an atmospheric read that is very enjoyable. Despite lots of self-doubt, Regina Cutter is an enjoyable character realistically drawn and full of promise. The secondary characters, in particular Stark and Devaney, seem at times a bit stereotypical, but clearly they have the possibility to become realistically drawn individuals. If this becomes a series, the pieces are certainly there to more fully develop these characters and others.

Coincidence does seem to play a strong role in the book whether in the form of the paranormal at just the right time or in the main story where something happens at just the exact right moment.  However, that fact along with the fact that the paranormal plays a very small roll, much less than one would expect from reading the jacket copy, are minor quibbles and nothing to really weaken the overall enjoyable read. The result of the work is an interesting and enjoyable novel that may have too little paranormal content for those very interested in the sub-genre while having too much for those readers who simply aren’t interested in anything paranormal.

Now You See Her

By Cecelia Tishy

Mysterious Press


ISBN # 0-89296-796-X


Kevin R. Tipple © 2008

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