Starr Sign by C.S. O’Cinneide

Candace Starr is one sharp character. We learn a lot about her in the opening scenes of this novel. She’s one tough lady, full of the grit we’d expect from a former hitwoman. Her dialogue is witty and to the point and not for the faint-hearted. She loves her drinks. She wakes up, not sure where she is or who she’s with, and doesn’t care. It’s a better spot than her normal hangout, over the E-Zee market on a mattress on the floor.

We are introduced to two important women in Candace’s life, her aunt Charlotte and Detective Malone. Malone contacts Starr to let her know she thinks she found her mother. Starr couldn’t care less, having been abandoned when she was a child, left to be brought up by her father. Only when Malone mentions she’s at the morgue does Candace get curious. Having her date, a computer geek friend, drop her off at the morgue, she meets a thirteen-year-old sister she never knew about. The dead body is not who they expected. Candace has to take care of her sister, much to her dismay.

“This is Janet,” I say.
“It’s lovely to meet you, Janet,” he says. My sister just sneers We really do have a lot of things in common besides our mother.
“I’ll be back tonight,” I tell him. “Touch her and I’ll pour sulphuric acid on your __.”
“It’s nice to see you, too, Candace.” But Deep still smiles. I sense he is enjoying the intrigue of all this. Probably beats crunching code all day long.

Candace, her sister Janet and her friend, Deep, the computer whiz, go off into the underworld of Detroit looking for the mother. Candace, the sister and the missing mother are connected to the mob family, the Scarpellos, now run by her cousin, Alex Scarpello. Is he really her cousin? Do they know where the mother is? What other secrets does Starr uncover?
This novel is full of action, lots of creative and sharp-edged dialogue, a clever plot and a satisfying ending. A must for thriller readers.


C.S. O’Cinneide is the author of Petra’s Ghost and the Candace Starr series. Her short stories have appeared in both anthologies and magazines. She lives in Guelph, Ontario.

  • Publisher : Dundurn Press (March 9 2021)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 304 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 145974487X
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1459744875

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Growing up in South Branch, Allan Hudson was encouraged to read from an early age by his mother who was a schoolteacher. He lives in Dieppe, NB, with his wife Gloria. He has enjoyed a lifetime of adventure, and travel and uses the many experiences as ideas for his writing. He is an author of action/adventure novels, historical fiction and a short story collection. His short stories – The Ship Breakers & In the Abyss – received Honourable Mention in the New Brunswick Writer’s Federation competition. He has stories published oncommuterlit.com, The Golden Ratio and his blog - South Branch Scribbler.