The Ferret by Tom Minder

The Ferret by Tom Minder
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Genre: Suspense/Mystery/Thriller, Contemporary
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

As an LDS elder, Louie Kimble, is assigned as construction foreman in Testimony Acres, a high-end real estate development, fifty miles north of Las Vegas. He discovers it’s a money laundering scheme put together by his religious superiors. Confronted by the FBI, he agrees to provide evidence and testify in exchange for his freedom.

After surgery to fix an unfortunate resemblance to a domesticated animal, he is given a new name and history and relocated to South Jersey. He rebuilds his life, with a girlfriend, a great job, and season tickets to the local pro football team.

Then one bright Saturday morning, there is a knock on his front door. His visitor will bring back his past, and change his life forever.

Sometimes laying low is the best way to stay safe.
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The cast of characters was large, but everyone’s roles were clearly explained. I never had trouble remembering who worked where or how they knew each other. That’s something pretty important to me as a reader, so I was glad to see so much attention paid to how everyone was connected.

With that being said, would have preferred to see more time spent on character development. None of the characters were well rounded, and many of them were described so briskly that I’d struggle to come up with the right words to describe their personalities or how they changed during the course of the storyline. There simply wasn’t that much time spent talking about these things, especially for anyone who wasn’t the protagonist. As much as i enjoyed the plot itself, this did dampen my enthusiasm for this book in general.

I was fascinated by the descriptions of how the witness protection program works, especially when it came to what people in this program are supposed to say about their pasts to the friends they make after moving to a brand new area. This wasn’t something I knew much about, so seeing how someone makes the transition to a new name, work history, and more made me root for the main character. More than anything, I wanted his fresh start to turn out well for him.

There were times when I seriously questions some of the risky decisions Louie made. He knew how dangerous it would be for anyone to discover his new identity and how hard the FBI had worked to completely and permanently separate his old life from his new one. Seeing him take so many unnecessary chances when it came to things like allowing the local newspaper to print his photo never quite made sense to me.

The ending was satisfying. I appreciated the way all of the important loose threads were tied up while still leaving some room for a sequel if the author ever decides to write one. That’s always a nice way to leave things off in the mystery genre.

Anyone who likes reading about organized crime or the witness protection program should give The Ferret a try.


  1. Thanks for the thoughtful review. Much appreciated.


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