Sink, Line and Hooker explores the seedy side of Toledo
Ever wondered what the seedy underbelly of Toledo looks like through the jaded lens of a Juvenile Court lawyer and retired Ohio Militia Brigadier General? Here’s your chance to tour along the banks of the Maumee while prostitutes in a clandestine ring are ruthlessly slaughtered and dismembered. The book, “Sink, Line and Hooker” is written by ‘tour guide’ and the University of Toledo (It was “TU” when he attended) Law school graduate, Charlie Rowell.
Meet your guide
Charlie Rowell is just as colorful in person as his characters are in print. The former Georgian spins a tale of his life the way he writes his mysteries— he leaves a trail of breadcrumbs in the form of conversation clues, giving you just enough to keep readers on the edge of the seat. Painting an interesting picture of his journey through law and providing good story content, Rowell concedes that he “didn’t know anything,” and became a lawyer, in part, to fuel his creative fire.
For Rowell, life is an inspiration. He acknowledges that in some way all of his volumes “relate to something I’ve stumbled into or stumbled over.” This includes an accent he encountered growing up in the South or his living situation at college with his Brooklyn roomie. He’s even created a character from a spunky little girl he met at the grocery store. “She was a lot of fun to write,” Rowell notes. He prides himself on character development and says, for him, “Lake Erie is a character” and as long as he focuses on the people and dialogue, the plot “will end up developing.”
With nine total novels, five of them published beginning with “My Cousin, Charlene,” Rowell admits that his creative writing professor and his sister encouraged him to keep writing. It was her “deathbed curse,” Rowell quips. The first manuscript of “Sink, Line, and Hooker” was copyrighted in 1991.
The adventure of a lifetime
“Sink, Line and Hooker” takes the reader down a path of destruction with Rosellen Masters, Executive Assistant to Toledo Mayor. The story begins with a 15-year grudge involving the brutal murder of a teenage boy, a former lover of Ms. Masters. A suspicious TPD Sergeant, Quentin Van Easter, relies on the sage advice of his retired partner, but keeps close tabs on Masters anyway, refusing to let the past lie. Throw in a little political corruption, a distracted lawyer’s big mistake, and the seduction of the coveted property owner Stanley Willis- and you can almost see the weekend raindrops rolling off the five red roses placed on the dead boy’s grave each year.
There’s more to this novel than death and devastation. A detour to Van Easter’s private country property sets the mood for a budding romance with a trespassing nude sunbather, Diane Hyler. Willis also strays off the beaten path and finds love in a dangerous game of cat and mouse, with the Mayor’s wife.
Regardless of the reader’s proclivity for violence or passion, this ride-on Rowell’s literary murder express will leave you breathless and clueless, only providing enough information to make you homicidal for more. Who killed Jerry Tully all those years ago, and why? And who is Ella Mae?
The final stop
With two more installments of the “Hooker” trilogy still in the works, “Kearnan’s Lament” set to be released around October 2019, Rowell promises that all the loose ends will be tied up in a pretty bow, dripping with blood and wrapped around another corpse. “Macy’s Window,” the grand finale and author’s favorite, will likely follow in November, but Rowell admits “we’ve been fooled before” on release dates.
Charlie Rowell’s imagination will have you glancing over your shoulder, checking your backseat, and locking your doors. There are eyes everywhere in the Glass City, no matter which side of the muddy river you call home.
Look for the entire series this Fall on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Sink-Line-Hooker-Charlie-Rowell/dp/1797622218