The Unknown Factor

Rated 4.50/5 based on 5 reviews
LAPD Det. Clausen investigates two deaths. Stymied by the autopsy findings, defying scientific explanation, refuses to believe the cases insoluble. More than a "who-done-it" mystery. Entwined with the main plot is his private life--a shambles. Mistakes threaten to undo him and put his career in jeopardy. Facing obstacles, this smart, tough, fallible man stands his ground or goes down fighting.

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Words: 77,350
Language: English
ISBN: 9781458166227
About Sally Garfield

Sally Garfield, 25 years as a choreographer/director, turns her creative energy to fiction writing: 24 short stories and 2 novels. In 2010, she was awarded 2nd place, Short Story, Our Front Porch Publishing. She is also the author and reader on a CD recording of 7 of her short stories: Another Story Creation by Sally Garfield from Gravity-Rising. Her writing credits include a one-act play Quiet the Cry and a musical (book, music, lyrics) Can You Hear Me? Presently, she is completing work on her second novel Jacks or Better. She lives on a small acreage in Iowa.


Review by: Chad Harris on Feb. 07, 2011 :
Suspenseful, provocative, entertaining. No "ho-hummer" characters occupy The Unknown Factor. Each leaves a mark, running the gamut from empathy to contempt to loathing, and certainly laughter.

Garfield pulls back the curtain and let's us see an array of characters--colorful and frightening, realistically drawn and believable--in pursuit of justice, revenge, murder, and, oh yes, love. Her obvious commitment to these characters, warts and all, keeps us committed all the way to the end of the story.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Jessica Nelle on Feb. 02, 2011 :
From the mysterious beginning right through to the end, Garfield knows how to tell a gripping story. She generates strong emotional responses to her well sculpted characters as she skillfully weaves them through the main and subplot.
Particularly compelling is the heft with which Garfield addresses "good vs. evil." If you're expecting a one-dimensional, black and white, stereotypical depiction of these concepts, you won't find it here. She draws frightening characters; some who, nevertheless, occupy a morally grey space. Chillingly presented, still one pauses when applying the traditional paradigm of right and wrong by which to judge them.

Full of life, her memorable characters jump off the page in this tragic tale. And one quickly gains respect and affection for Detective Clausen and his partner Sanderson, who, by the way, reveal a capacity for compassion equal to their cynicism. I'd love to hang around these guys and just watch them at work. I hope there's going to be a sequel.
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Charles Petterson on Jan. 07, 2011 :
Great story that kept me guessing until the end. Ms Garfield's lush wrtiting style puts the reader right into the arm pits of the bad guys and flower arrangements of the wealthy Grandmother. This is a truly creative story that blends in pop culture, a bit of science-fiction, and believable police work without condescending cheap shots at the 'men in blue.' This is thoroughly enjoyable.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Jon Streeter on Dec. 17, 2010 :
I just finished The Unknown Factor. It's terrific. When you buy it, I would advise downloading it onto a portable reader because you're not going to want to put it down. I'm a court reporter, and I was reading it on my Droid every time the courtroom drama paused for even a few seconds. The book opens with a seemingly unfathomable and fascinating mystery. I not only just had to find out what had really happened, but I found myself getting caught up in the lives of the characters, and I had to keep reading to find out what was happening to them as well. This will happen to you, and you're going to meet people you'll love and people you'll hate, so don't say you haven't been warned. The ending ties up enough of the loose ends to work as a mystery and leaves enough of them loose to prompt me to wonder what they're doing now. And like the dragon in The Fairie Queen, the most dangerous and evil character in this novel remains alive, still dangerous, still evil, and probably sneaking up behind me right now. Buy this book, and then help me convince Ms. Garfield that the only right thing to do is write a SEQUEL!!!
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Rosa Garfield on Dec. 11, 2010 : (no rating)
What a wonderful story! So much marketing out there it's refreshing to read a novel that wasn't cranked out just under the deadline. Love Chamoro what a snake! I really want to hear more about him.

Well researched and very realistic I can't wait to read more of Mrs./Ms. Garfield's work!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

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