Tony Schmidt joins the Central Hotline in sunny Bonita Beach, California to improve his listening skills. Shahla Lawton joins the Hotline to fulfill a volunteering requirement for her high school. Neither one expects to get mixed up in a murder investigation.

But that is before Shahla’s best friend, Joy, also a listener, is murdered.  Tony and Shahla discover that they are able to uncover information that the police can’t.  Information about the “inappropriate” callers who haunt the Hotline, and information about other people with a connection to the Hotline who may have hidden motives to kill the beautiful Joy. Questions arise. Will the murderer strike the Hotline again? And if the murderer does strike again, will Shahla be the next target?

Meet the Chameleon, a caller who assumes a different personality each time he calls the Hotline. Some of the personalities are female--and some are sinister. Or the minister at the Church of the Risen Lord, who claims he knows exactly when the Rapture will occur--the day of judgment when the faithful will be swept up to heaven. Modern computer technology has provided him with the answer. Or the poet who lives in Las Vegas and likes to play video poker--and other things. And then there's Tony's roommate--a sexist pig if there ever was one.

Tony and Shahla have harrowing adventures together in venues ranging from Southern California to Las Vegas, as they try to distinguish the annoying-but-harmless callers from the dangerous, and figure out whether the murderer might just be somebody not connected with the Hotline.
Read A Review:

Not long after Tony Schmidt joins the Central Hotline in Bonita Beach, California, Joy is found murdered.  Both are listeners—people who man the Hotline and talk to the callers.  Tony pairs up with Shahla Lawton, another listener and Joy’s best friend.

They begin working many shifts together.  Since Tony and Shahla work at the Hotline, they find they can often get information the police are unable to obtain.  But instead of turning everything over to the police, they begin to follow up on much of the information themselves.  Partly because the police don’t seem too receptive to the information and partly because of privacy rules.  

They begin looking into some of the inappropriate callers and others with a connection to the Hotline to determine who might have had a motive to kill Joy.  There are many strange people and they have to sift through information to determine if the person is just having trouble or if they might have a motive to have killed Joy.

Tony and Shahla put themselves in many very sticky situations and find themselves in peril more than once as they work to uncover the identity of the killer.

This is a great story.  It moves along quickly and keeps you guessing as to who committed this murder and why.  There are plenty of red herrings and things happen regularly that made me change my mind continuously about who I thought did it.

I really enjoyed getting to know Tony and Shahla.  Even though Shahla is only a teenager, she is such an integral part of this story.  Their relationship is terrific.  I hope there will be more books with these two main characters.

This story is well crafted and the California setting terrific.  I highly recommend this book.

Dawn Dowdle