Self-professed “nobody” Monk Buttman is a courier for a company that may or may not be sketchy. He gets messages at a back room, from a boss/handler who harasses a frustrated receptionist who seems to be unhappy with everything and everyone. Buttman’s “boss” seems to see him as a mystery. Buttman’s background is a blank slate and Buttman was brought into the company by Buttman’s boss’s boss, suggesting things are not exactly as they seem. Does Buttman’s past connect to the core plot? One begins to wonder.
Near the book’s end, Buttman actually says he “might not be very important… but (he’s) not an idiot,” yet he’s often more foolish than wise. Not 1/7th of the way into the book he’s bedded one woman and before the ¼ mark he’s in bed with another. Pages later there’s more sex, and sprinkled throughout are constant references to breasts. Buttman has a knack for constantly encountering women he finds attractive, and fortunately for him, most reciprocate. It makes an otherwise well-crafted non-Private Investigator/PI plotline read like a personal fantasy of an average guy who doesn’t have money, particular talent or great looks to whom women constantly throw themselves. For that reason, the ideal reader for this book is likely mostly male, which is a shame, but it’s 2019 and readers can get the idea that a character appreciates attractive women without constant reminders that he’s a breast man.
Buttman walks in on the weary Desiree, the receptionist at his work, being sexually assaulted by boss Todd Boyer. Boyer is only too happy to offer Buttman sloppy seconds. Desiree is done with the abuse. She suddenly has a knife and guts Boyer, who bleeds to death in front of them. Desiree makes off with a bunch of cash, Buttman exercises enough discretion to protect his employers, and is subsequently tasked with finding Desiree and the stolen money.
Readers who are put off by grammatical and technical mistakes will find some throughout. There are spots where non-POV character’s thoughts or motives are given (head-hopping). But if readers can look past the mistakes and the many breast references there’s an enjoyable mystery to be found.
WHERE FOOLS DARE TO TREAD is a well-crafted, enjoyable and intriguing mystery that, for better or worse, is a little heavy on the protagonist’s breast-level view of the world.
~S. Marie Lindenmuth for IndieReader