There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
Some Friend Chuck Fager is. The author—a member of the Religious Society of Friends—has tossed an unassuming Quaker into a lurid mystery involving sex, fraud, and murder. Un-Friendly Persuasion, published by Fager’s own Kimo Press, is one part Agatha Christie and two parts Carl Hiassen. While Quaker sleuth/apple farmer Lemuel Penn searches for the murderer of a crooked defense contractor in Washington, D.C., he mixes it up with shady congressmen, disgruntled middle managers, and sex- crazed women; his partner in crime- solving is Perry Adams, a worldly mail carrier fed up with the postal system. “The reason you get postal workers shooting everybody is because the stress level in the mail room really builds up,” explains erstwhile Washington City Paper contributor Fager, who works as a writer and part-time postman in Wallingsford, Pa. “The mail is like a river: It never stops, and if you don’t get the stuff processed and sent out, it will flood the place. It was a natural setting for the book.” Un-Friendly Persuasion is Fager’s second whodunit; the first was Murder Among Friends, which also featured Penn as its hero. Both paperbacks can be ordered from Kimo Press, (800) 742-3150.