A Spark of Death by Bernadette Pajer
A Professor Bradshaw Mystery (Professor Bradshaw Series)

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Can death bring a man back to life? When UW Professor Benjamin Bradshaw discovers a despised colleague dead inside the Faraday Cage of the Electric Machine, his carefully controlled world shatters. The facts don't add up--the police shout murder--and Bradshaw is the lone suspect. To protect his young son and clear his name, he must find the killer.

Seattle in 1901 is a bustling blend of frontier attitude and cosmopolitan swagger. The Snoqualmie Falls Power Plant lights the city, but to most Seattleites, electricity is new-fangled and dangerous. The public wants a culprit--they want Bradshaw behind bars. The killer wants Bradshaw dead.

His life and liberty threatened, Bradshaw discovers the thrill of investigation as he's thrust deeper into the hunt.Questions abound. How had the Electric Machine's Tesla Coil delivered a fatal shock? Was the murder personal--or connected to President McKinley's planned visit? Were students involved, or in danger? And why had Bradshaw's best friend, Henry, fled to Alaska the day of the murder?

When Henry's niece Missouri appears on Bradshaw's porch in need of a home, her unorthodox views and femininity confuse and intrigue him as he struggles to protect his own haunting secret. Danger and death lurk everywhere--disguised as accidents. Has Bradshaw come alive again only to lose all he holds dear? Before it's too late, will he discover the circuit path that led to a spark of death?

About Bernadette Pajer

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Bernadette Pajer is a Seattle native and graduate of the University of Washington, Bothell. She lives in Monroe, WA with her husband and son.
Published September 5, 2011 by Poisoned Pen Press. 221 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for A Spark of Death

Kirkus Reviews

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His students despised him, his wife secretly did much of his work, and he was involved in a dishonest business deal with Henry Pratt, a friend of Bradshaw’s who left for Alaska on the day of the murder.

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Publishers Weekly

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Set in 1901 Seattle, Pajer's deft, highly entertaining debut introduces calm, relentlessly logical Benjamin Bradshaw, an electrical engineering professor at the University of Washington.

May 30 2011 | Read Full Review of A Spark of Death: A Professor...

New York Journal of Books

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With red herrings, foreshadowing, and hidden clues added in, A Spark of Death leads us on a similarly breathless journey from beginning to end.Bernadette Pajer’s protagonist, Professor Benjamin Bradshaw, is the one who takes the reader through the story in the third-person point of view.

Jul 05 2011 | Read Full Review of A Spark of Death: A Professor...

Reviewing the Evidence

Bernadette Pajer has set her debut novel in Seattle, 1901, at a time when electricity is still too new for most people to understand much less embrace it.

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Mysterious Reviews

Review: A university teacher is accused of somehow being involved in — perhaps even perpetrating — the death by electrocution of a fellow professor, one with whom he had had widely known professional and personal disagreements, in A Spark of Death, the first mystery in this series by Bernadette P...

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Portland Book Review

The story of how he clears himself of the murder charge takes us on a tour of early Seattle and into the surrounding area while introducing us to what was state of the art electrical engineering at that time.

Jan 03 2012 | Read Full Review of A Spark of Death: A Professor...

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