This thriller presents an interesting look into the edgy lifestyles of avant-garde artists and others living on the fringes of society.
A wild ride through the world of custom bikes, high-end orchestras, and the daily lives of some offbeat homicide investigators, Tune Up is an action-packed adventure.
Joe Klingler’s newest novel brings back detectives Kandy and Qigiq, an Alaskan native, as they try to solve some of San Francisco’s most unique cases. In this first book in the Secrets of Mylin series, Kandy and Qigiq become involved in a handful of cases that at first seem to have nothing to do with each other.
An elderly Chinese woman is hit in a busy intersection and is hospitalized. After interviewing a few eyewitnesses, the detectives realize the incident is no accident but was meant to draw out a missing person. This leads the partners to a secretive motorcycle club with a hazy connection to an all-woman Asian string orchestra that may be involved in illegal activities.
As Kandy and Qigiq work their case, the second perspective of Joe Roberts is woven into the plot. Joe, an independent photographer who specializes in unplanned street images, is selling his photos at an art fair when the subject of one of his images wanders into his booth. The beautiful Asian woman, Mylin, immediately makes an impact on Joe and inadvertently draws him into her mysterious life. As a member of the GO Orchestra, Mylin is a mystery that Joe cannot resist trying to solve.
The two story lines, which at first seem completely unrelated, begin to come together as both the detectives and Joe get further into the motorcycle gang’s activities and Mylin’s strange past. The book moves along at a good clip, rarely going a chapter without another incident that puts one of the characters in mortal danger.
Though the multiple plots begin to dovetail later in the book, the beginning is a bit confusing. Plotlines and characters are jumped between, making initial involvement on the part of the reader difficult. Some of the revelations at the book’s end also seem to come out of the blue, with few to no clues left for the reader throughout the book.
This is a book with a plot based entirely on action. In-depth character development is sacrificed as a result. Characters are presented as a way to move the plot forward, and inner motivations and backstory are relatively nonexistent. Due to the romantic element present between Joe and Mylin, this lack of development ends up being a detriment.
Tune Up is well researched, especially in the area of San Francisco motorcycle clubs. It also presents an interesting look into the edgy lifestyles of avant-garde artists and others living on the fringes of society, adding another layer of interest.
Full of plenty of twists, turns, and dynamic characters, Tune Up is a thrilling and satisfying read.
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