A MURDER MYSTERY BY L.C. LARSEN
Some Men Deserve to Die
Available at Amazon.com/Books in Kindle and paperback formats
L.C. Larsen is a retired family physician and lives in Greenville, North Carolina. He and his wife enjoy traveling throughout the United States and Canada with their small trailer, visiting their children and grandchildren and as many national parks, monuments, and lakeshores as possible.
Three Choices Press is the business home for books and other writings by L.C. Larsen. This name for the business was chosen based on decisions and choices made by the protagonist, Jack Damen, in the Jack Damen, M.D., medical mystery series. The first book in the series, “Some Men Deserve to Die,” has been published and Larsen is at work on a second book.
Jack Damen is a talented physician with a haunted past. As a respected professor in an elite medical school, he tries to be a good person in his professional and private lives but is drawn into situations where his choices and actions often fall short of this goal. Most of his choices are thoughtful and within societal laws and norms, but others, made by reflex in the spur of the moment, fall far outside conventional boundaries. And in some situations after careful deliberation, he decides “Right or wrong, this works for me. Screw what other people think.”
As we go about leading our lives, many of our decisions and choices are similar to Damen’s.
The main character Jack Damen follows in the footsteps of other well thought out detectives, and like them, he is much more than a detective. He has history. He is very smart. He is a bit of a loner. Most of all, he integrates his science and intuition to solve complex problems. Read closely since the clues and breadcrumbs are there. Jack Damen and many other characters are solid and well designed to fit well in a sequel or two. I certainly hope there will be another Jack Damen mystery in my future.
I enjoyed this engaging book full of twists and turns. It was impossible to figure out how all the seemingly disparate pieces would come together. However the end pulled all the threads together nicely with great satisfaction. I can recommend this book to anyone who'd enjoy a good weekend read that will take them on a treasure hunt for facts and conclusions in this entertaining brain teaser.
Jack Damen is a complex character, a former US military assassin with PTSD due both to his former military role and to his wife’s brutal rape. Both traumas haunt him ; at the request of his psychiatrist, he seeks atonement in becoming a physician to take care of people rather than killing them.
Dr. Damen is a well-drawn character. The reader is shown how well he can both nail the correct diagnoses and how profoundly humanely he treats his patients and his students at a highly-regarded medical school.
Enter a former patient’s family member with a request that Dr Damen investigate a high stakes life insurance case concerning cause of death. He reluctantly agrees.
The majority of the book concentrates on “ who dun it?”: was it really death by natural causes? If not, who had the most to gain? The author throws so many red herrings in the path, the reader is never sure. The deceased was an deplorable human being : thus the title of the book.
You’ll need to read the novel to find out, and a good, tightly-told tale it is. Hard to believe this is the author’s first novel. I’m looking forward to meeting Jack Damen, M.D. again in future books by L.C Larsen.
August 24, 2021 - L.C. Larsen co-hosted a Zoom meeting of the Pamlico Writers Group with S.C. McIntyre to discuss their new books and their experiences writing and publishing them. Larsen's book, Some Men Deserve to Die, is a murder-mystery novel and McIntyre's book, Outside Heaven, An Afghanistan Experience, is a memoir about her experiences leading the U.S. government's humanitarian team during the first year of the war there. Different genres and different approaches to publishing led to great discussions.
October 4, 2021 - A Creekside Cafe interview by author Sherri Hollister with L.C. Larsen was held on October 4, 2021. In it, Hollister explores some of the characters in Some Men Deserve to Die and Larsen's motivations for writing the novel. The interview is available at https://sherrilhollister.com.