sweet man is gone
When the death of her heartbreakingly handsome guitarist, Jimmy Nashville, is ruled a suicide, blues-singer Maxx Maxwell resolves to go sleuthing on her own.  Sweet Man Is Gone features a quirky cast of characters that include a skeptical cop and an assortment of eccentric musicians.  The plot, with its surprising and dramatic climax, will keep readers guessing until the last few pages.
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Ever since guitarist Jimmy Nashville joined Maximum Blues, Maxx Maxwell's blues band, she's had visions of them hitting the big time.

Unfortunately before that can happen, Jimmy Nashville falls to his death from his ninth floor apartment. The police believe it was suicide and have closed the case. Maxx is not convinced and sets out to find evidence that it was murder to convince the police. In the meantime she must find a new guitarist before her band falls apart.

She begins talking to Monique, Jimmy's girlfriend, to try to learn all she can about his life and who might have killed him. Stan, the guitar player she replaced with Jimmy, is constantly showing up and trying to get back into the band.

Can Maxx discover the truth without putting herself in danger and still have time to keep her band together?

This was a great cozy mystery. It's a fast read. I really liked Maxx. She has a real heart for her music, but she also cares about people. The author's knowledge of the blues music scene was very apparent as well.

I highly recommend this book.

Dawn Dowdle

A blues singer turns detective when her guitarist's death is ruled a suicide.
After one bad relationship with a guitar man, Maxx Maxwell has kept her distance from sexy, talented Jimmy Nashville. But when she arrives at his upper Manhattan apartment to pick him up for a gig, she's stunned to learn that his body has just been discovered in the alley outside. Unable to believe Jimmy killed himself, Maxx keeps calling Stallings, the soon-to-be-retired cop in charge of the case, with contrary evidence. She discovers a tape and some handwritten music in Jimmy's apartment that lead to a recently deceased country singer who led a life just made for sad country songs. When Maxx discovers Jimmy's latest girlfriend, wrist slashed, in her tub, she's even more convinced that a killer is loose and keeps bombarding an uninterested Stallings with theories. Meanwhile, her band is going through problems of its own. After temporarily taking on a guitarist she'd once fired, Maxx begins to wonder if he murdered Jimmy. A mysterious stranger Jimmy had words with at their rehearsal studio brings the case to a boil worthy of a New York summer. Maxx will need all her considerable street smarts and every lucky break she can catch before the puzzle is finally solved.
Maxx's debut has a real feel for the bar-music scene and a gutsy, believable sleuth.

Kirkus Review, 15 May 2008