Monday, June 14, 2010
Review: Revenge Served Cold by Jackie Fullerton
From the back cover: "Kathy Spence awakens in the middle of the night and finds herself in a living nightmare, her husband has been run down and she is the primary suspect. With an eyewitness to the crime and proof that her car was the murder weapon, it appears to be and open-and-shut case.
Terrified for her future, Kathy turns to amateur sleuth, Anne Marshall, for help. Believing in Kathy's innocence, Anne launches her own investigation, uncovering proof of a conspiracy tht reaches from Kathy's past and threatens her own life.
In a race against time, Anne must count on her close friends and even the ghost of her father to help her bring a killer to justice before it's too late.
My thoughts: Revenge Served Cold is billed as a mystery/suspense book but unfortunately, for me anyway, there was almost no suspense and not much of a mystery. There were two viable suspects introduced in the first couple of chapters and it was so easy to figure out the murderer and the motives. I thought the characters were not fleshed out at all and what was revealed about them was entirely implausible. Do you honestly think the prime suspect's lawyer would have Anne, a law student, look over the case file and ask her if she sees something missing? Not likely! Would police detectives not question the neighbors to see if they saw anything unusual? When Anne brings certain facts to the detectives attention, he has a Homer Simpson moment and asks "why didn't we think of that?" I could almost picture him saying "DUH" as he smacked his forehead.
How could this book be improved? If the author wanted to keep the paranormal and amateur sleuth elements in the story, it would be better to call this a cozy. There is a lot more leeway in the unbelievable in a cozy. Readers almost expect the amateur sleuth to solve the crime but even in a cozy the characters are not so cliched and situations are not quite as contrived. I could go on and on but I want potential readers to make up their own mind. Maybe other readers won't mind not being able to connect with any of the characters or the very unrealistic dialogue throughout the book but for me these things do matter so the book did not work for me at all. It didn't pull me in at the beginning and it never managed to grab me for the rest of the story. Sorry, but this one gets a 2** It left me with that flat "meh" feeling.
Disclosure: A review copy of the book was provided by Rebecca at The Cadence Marketing Group.