In this addictive little collection, we jump straight into the world of Detective Shaw — a no frills, down to earth investigator with an eye for details — and take a peek inside six of his most memorable cases. 

The short stories in Detecting Fear are quick, satisfying, and varied. Some were intensely serious, one had a generous splash of humor, and one offered a deeper peek into Shaw’s life and backstory. Every story employed plenty of foreshadowing, allowing an astute reader to solve the crime alongside or ahead of Detective Shaw. 

Detecting Fear

This gripping suspense story drops the reader right into the chair opposite an ice-cold murderer. The things left unsaid are the most telling in this spine-tingling race against the clock.

It’s All About the Cat

And now for something completely different! This humorous piece features a fabulous whodunit perfect for the short story format. 

Dying Print

Shaw is far cleverer than the suspect in this “I knew she was trouble when she walked in” style noir.

A Little Bit of Murderer 

This one feels like a vignette. It is short, has a surprising twist, but seemed a bit topheavy.

It’s In the Bag

For thriller fans, this piece is great adventure. Full of surprising twists and outstanding foreshadowing, It’s In The Bag is my favorite. I think Gilligan needs his own spinoff.

Searching for Sunshine

To wrap things up, Shaw teams up with a grieving daughter to uncover the truth about her little sister’s death.

This is a slim collection of previously-published short stories all featuring Detective Shaw. Because they are in the original format, some pieces are in present tense, others in past tense, and one in first person, making for bumpy reading. Some stories felt like they were part of a larger piece, but all were self-contained and readable as standalone pieces. 

After enjoying these slivers of Shaw, the reader is left hungry for more clues about the intrepid detective. Whether he appears in other short stories or in a longer format, any mystery involving Detective Shaw is well worth the read.

CW: child victims

Detecting Fear: A Collection of Mystery, Suspense, and Intrigue by Shannon Hollinger is expected to be released March 15, 2021.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: