When retired lawyer Matt Royal returned from a week of frolicking in the sun with a beautiful woman, he was more than ready to get back to the daily routine of the island living he so loves - fishing, eating, drinking, and more fishing. Unfortunately, one of his best friends was shot in the chest by a sniper while crossing the street to meet Police Chief Bill Lester for lunch. Amazingly Logan Hamilton didn't die, but he was secreted away so that the sniper would think that he was killed.
The Longboat Key Chief of Police temporarily placed Logan in the morgue so that the killer might think he had gotten away with murder and would relax his guard – and to keep him from once more going after Logan.
Unfortunately for Matt, now someone was also trying to kill him. As he reluctantly becomes involved in the case, he finds that other seemingly random murders or attempted murders are tied together.
The plot delves into an old document regarding the Black Seminole Indians and the possibility that they own some of Florida's prime real estate, and that does not set well with those who currently own said land. Many billions of dollars are at stake as well as the history and tradition of the area depending on who really owns the land.
Bitter Legacy has Matt and his friends on the run while they try to find out who wants them dead and why. Added to the mix is a new member of the Longboat Key's police force who gives as good as she gets. His antagonists are an eclectic group including a murderous biker gang, a gun yielding fisherman, and an eccentric billionaire on his deathbed.
This fifth Matt Royal mystery thriller by H. Terrell Griffin provides plenty of entertainment as we spend quality time with one of the more interesting group of friends in any current mystery series.
As others have noted, there is a resemblance in this series with the Travis McGee series by John D. McDonald. Royal and his life of ease in Longboat Key directly contradicts the other life he must lead when someone comes along and causes havoc and death among his friends. Wyatt’s Revenge is an example of Matt losing a valued friend.
Griffin writes at an easy, descriptive pace and the discerning reader will sense the breeze and feel the hot sun beating down – we often feel what Matt is experiencing when he sits on his patio with a drink in hand watching the slow moving boaters as they head out to open water. And we feel his relief at the end of the day when the killer has been stopped and he is back among his friends on the island he loves.
A special thank you goes to Oceanview Publishing for providing a complimentary copy of Bitter Legacy for review. If you are interested in purchasing any of H. Terrell Griffin’s Matt Royal series, the books are available at Amazon.com.