Killing is the best revenge.
Eight years ago, Walter Buczyno went out to rent a movie and returned to find a burglar raping his cancer-stricken wife, who lapsed into a coma and died while the perp, Franklin Edward Harris, got off with minimum time thanks to his lawyer’s excellent work. Raving against the justice system fails to placate Walter, who goes on to devise an intricate home security system that allows him to attack and kill a druggie intruder and, later, a pair of teens casing his place. But his glory day comes when Harris, released from prison, returns to off him, and he bludgeons him to death and throws his carcass into his basement crawl space with the others before heading off to tell his in-laws how he’s avenged dear Dottie’s death. Unfortunately for him, a frozen pipe bursts, his neighbor calls in a plumber, and his killing spree is discovered. New cop partners Riehle and Capparelli, who catch the case, think they’ve got a serial killer on their hands. Then Walter runs, winding up in a casino where luck lets him win at the tables but tosses him two curves. All demons, including those of Riehle and Capparelli, are exorcized by a fortuitous plot twist.
Major’s mystery debut features a mildly interesting plot idea scuttled by intemperate sermonizing and turgid prose.