Book Review: “Written Off,” by E J Copperman

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The First in the “Mysterious Detective” Series

A mystery author who writes about an author writing a mystery grabs a reader’s attention, don’t you think?  As much as we enjoy books, the process is fascinating to us as well. When we get a chance to see both, what’s not to like? Which is only part of why I enjoyed Written Off from the first page, as author and featured character Rachel Goldman finishes writing the latest mystery in her series.

E J Copperman is a fine author with writing skills to match. I was hooked from the beginning. Not just the mystery of the story, though that was terrific. The dialogue, and the premise of the story were intriguing. It was such a fun listen too.

I’d never read a book by Copperman before, but I will be adding more to my cart. This one especially appealed in audio, when I saw the book on Audible, narrated by Amanda Ronconi. She is a wonderful and popular narrator, who handles the lines of humor with panache. It was a pleasure to listen. You can hear a sample here on Audible.

The Story

Rachel is an author who writes stories about a man, a consultant, who finds missing persons for a county prosecutor. With many novels published in her series she knows her character, Duffy Madison–and his personality–well.

So when she is contacted by a man with the same name—and career–as her fictional Duffy Madison, she thinks he is either stalking her, playing some game or not altogether with it. She doesn’t have much time to decide, since the reason he has contacted her involves a missing woman. Once she accepts he isn’t a stalker or insane, she is drawn into the case that includes several murders. Before she knows it, she becomes a prime target. Will she be the one to find the killer or will she be the next victim?

I suppose this is considered a cozy mystery. While a serial killer might be on the loose and a love interest may be in the mix, there wasn’t graphic violence or sex. It was totally a wonderful novel that completely entertained me. Great dialogue between likable characters. The story, while light in some ways, has a solid mystery with past murders that might connect. Not to mention the mystery of Duffy Madison himself.

Loved the author’s style, the dialogue, and the pace. It is interesting to consider, is the author Rachel able to solve a crime because she knows how Duffy will investigate? Fun to think about, at the same time entertaining to hear about a writer’s process and life.

While you will find a solid conclusion, hopefully the human–if fictional–Duffy will return in future books. It isn’t often we see a character come to life. I’ll be watching for more by this terrific author.

E J Copperman is also the author of two other cozy mystery series, An Asperger’s Mystery series and the Haunted Guesthouse series.

Whether you listen or read, you will enjoy this story! Personally I love Audible.


Merry Citarella, often writing as Merrci, writes on a wide range of topics. Recently relocated to the Oregon Coast in the northwest United States, she frequently writes travel features on the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She specializes in health and aging, Alzheimer’s Disease, food, lifestyle, and book reviews. For more information you can see her on The Writers’Door. You can read more articles here or at her websites Alzheimers HQ and Simple Living Ideas

Author: Merry Citarella

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