RUNNING A MARATHON IS TOUGH ENOUGH. IT’S EVEN HARDER TO OUTRUN DEATH.
Erick Anderssen is the best-selling author of a series of how-to books for baby boomers seeking inner knowledge and strong thighs. Now Erick’s next book is due, and his agent, for mysterious reasons, is pushing hard for him to write about the experience of training to run the GrandHotel Chicago Marathon—where his egotistical ex-wife is the race director. But before he can even begin work on the book, a shocking and violent death derails his research.
Before he knows it, Erick is racing to uncover the secrets of the marathon—all while fending off assaults, bomb threats, international fraud, and strange disappearances. Along the way, Erick encounters a wide and fascinating cast of characters—fading Olympians, international singing sensations, aggressive Chicago cops, and a photographer who he believes is hiding a terrible secret—running steadily toward what may be a tragic outcome at the finish line.
In his debut novel, Death at a Distance, long-time Chicagoan Mark A. Nystuen, whose twelve-year leadership helped the LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon become one of the largest participatory sporting events in the world, gives readers a vivid, local’s-eye view of contemporary Chicago—its politics, its world-class food scene, and its history—as well as a behind-the-scenes look at the personality clashes, compromises, and conflicts involved in running—or running in—one of the largest marathons in the world.
I recommend Death at a Distance to anyone who enjoys a good mystery, especially those who have even a slight interest in what it takes to put on and run a marathon. I am hoping to see more works from Mr. Nystuen in the future.
This book is a great summer read. It’s a murder mystery without the gore. It’s a love story without the gratuitous sex. And it’s a wonderful, behind-the-scenes look at the Chicago marathon. The characters are well-developed and from the first page through to the end, the plot never slows down. I am looking forward to Erick Anderssen’s next adventure.
The characters were well-defined and really interesting. It was definitely a page turner. The author really brings Chicago to life, and there are fascinating glimpses into the amazingly complex makings of the Chicago Marathon. The protagonist, Erick, is an interesting and likable character, snarky and smart. I can’t wait for the next book to see how he stumbles into his next mess.