The P'town Banner Writes About HIGH SEASON

This review isn't currently available online (it's behind the Banner's subscription-only firewall), so I can only legally quote four paragraphs, I'm pretty sure. But the whole thing's very nice.

In “High Season” we are introduced
to the corpse of the Reverend
Ron Merkin, a preacher devoted
to railing against the evils
of homosexuality. However, as
the saying goes, “thou doth protest
too much,” since his body
has been found on the beach
clad in a gaudy muumuu, tasteless
pumps and a stylish scarf
wrapped around his neck in a
death knot. It seems the saint
was no saint at all; in fact, he was
— shudder — a cross-dresser,
and his wife, who has reported
the murder to the authorities,
was not in the dark about this
most secret of secrets. (“There’s
something fundamentally sad
about the Reverend Rons of the
world: they’re hypocrites, but
they’re tortured hypocrites,” explains

The case is assigned to Detective
Frank Coffin and his sidekick
Lola, a strong and gentle
lesbian on whom he has
a schoolboy crush; both
characters will be reappearing
in the new book.
A burned-out hometown
boy who was previously
a detective in Baltimore,
Coffin stretched
his abilities too far and
cracked — hence the
return to the womb of
Provincetown, where he
joined the force under
the cloud of his uncle,
the corrupt former chief
of police. Coffin has his
demons to deal with on
every level as he fights to
solve the case and come
to terms with a personal
relationship with
a young woman who
would very much like to have a
child with him. Hmmm…

During the course of the investigation,
we are led down a
road where more murders occur
in a most unusual fashion. It
seems greed and real estate gluttony
are at the core of this thriller,
which moves along with precise
speed and a firsthand knowledge
of the town where all the
action takes place. This author
does indeed write about what he
knows, at least geographically,
for we doubt Loomis has firsthand
knowledge of murder.
In the course of researching
the book, Loomis had some experiences
that were eye-openers.
“I’ve had lots of fun drinking at
the A-House and Vixen and the
Crown and other clubs in P’town,”
Loomis says. “I actually stumbled
into the Vault once with a girlfriend,
who was curious about
what might be going on in such
a place. We were asked — very
politely — if we might not prefer
to go someplace else, please. We
did, but the glimpse I got of that
scene was pretty interesting.” And
fodder for the future.

“High Season” is a fictitious
account peppered with some
juicy glimpses into good and
bad, evil pitted against “right,”
and in the telling you can see
that the author had some fun
with his subject.

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