Brought to you by OBS reviewer Jerjen
The Question Of The Missing Head by E. J. Copperman and Jeff Cohen is an incredible book. I have read E. J. Copperman’s Haunted Guesthouse series and I really love that series. So when I saw this book by the same author, I knew I had to try it. I’m very glad I did because I totally enjoyed it.
Samuel Hoenig, who runs Questions Answered, answers questions for a living. He doesn’t have very many clients but he works hard at finding answers for the ones he does have. On the same day, he gets an assistant, Ms. Washburn, and the question, who stole a frozen head from the Garden State Cryonics Institute. While initially investigating the missing head, he finds a dead body at the institute and his mother pays him to answer the question of who the killer is.
Ms Washburn becomes Samuel’s assistant and Samuel is very surprised about how quickly he begins to trust and like her. For Samuel, meeting new people and making friends are just about impossible tasks. She realizes that Samuel has Aspergers Syndrome and is very helpful in helping Samuel deal with some of his difficulties connected with the syndrome. The bond that is formed between the two was refreshing and welcomed. Until he meets Ms Washburn his mother is the one that helps Samuel and teaches him things he needs to know about emotions and social correctness. But now he has someone else to help him.
The two mysteries to be solved are carried throughout the entire book and made for great reading. There are some twists and turns along the way and, to me, it was impossible to figure out the who-dunnit and why until it was revealed at the end. I really like the way the mysteries were handled and I love the way they were solved. I never saw the solutions coming. The answers to the questions were surprising but definitely plausible and I really enjoyed that. After knowing who the thief and murderer are I could think back and pick up clues that I missed along the way.
But in my opinion, what made this book stand out from others, was the fact that Samuel has Asperger’s Syndrome. I had never heard of this syndrome until it was introduced on the television show Parenthood. One of the children on the show, Max, has Asperger’s and that’s where I learned about it. On the show you can see the actions caused by Asperger’s but not the thought process. In this book, you get to witness both the actions and the thought process for someone with Asperger’s. I thought this was fascinating and I feel like I learned a lot more about it. After researching the author, Jeff Cohen, I see that he has written two nonfiction books on Asperger’s, and while reading the book I knew this author had to have a lot of knowledge about the syndrome. It is so realistic and well written and gives the reader an insight into the syndrome. Samuel has a very difficult time when his daily routine is disturbed, even in the smallest way. He can not tolerate loud noises or being touched. He takes everything he hears literally and has no understanding of idioms. I believe all of these character traits can be found in a person with Aspergers and they were descriptively realistically displayed in Samuel.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good mystery that will not be easily solved. I would also recommend this book to anyone who has any desire to know more about Aspergers Syndrome. I was so happy to find a book that allowed me to learn about something that interested me in a work of fiction. I cannot recommend this book enough. I sure hope this book is the first in a long series of Aspergers Mysteries.