Book reviews à la bookworm...The good, the bad, and everything in between.
Daniel Vartanian has been unable to sleep for the past eleven years, ever since he found gruesome pictures in his brother Simon’s possession. Pictures his own father, a judge, burned after Simon’s death so they couldn’t affect his career. Pictures that resurfaces along with a very alive, and seriously bent on revenge, Simon a couple of weeks ago. Pictures now in Daniel’s possession after his brother’s death (yeah, he really is dead this time).
When a killer starts reenacting a thirteen year old murder, Daniel knows those pictures will most certainly end up as part of the investigation, especially when a ghost from the past comes into his office. A woman whose body was found in a ditch, wrapped in a blanket thirteen years ago. Only, the woman in from of him isn’t Alicia Tremaine, but her twin sister, Alex Fallon, a woman determined to find her missing stepsister, yet another link in the long chain of investigations.
Someone is determined to set the record straight, expose a small-town’s secrets, others are equally determined to keep those secrets intact. By all means. Even murder.
Okay, I need to just breathe for a moment, here, because this novel was intense. Ooh, boy. This small trilogy inside a larger (loosely-connected) series is proving to be one heck of a ride. It all started with Simon’s reappearance (and the reappearance of the pictures) in Die For Me, continues with Daniel’s story (and a small resolution regarding those pictures) in Scream For Me, and will apparently come to a grand finale with Susannah’s story (those pictures and Daniel’s investigation sure opened a big can of worms) in Kill For Me.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s start at the beginning, or in this trilogy’s case, in the middle.
This was yet another 5+ star read in this winner-streak by Karen Rose. Chilling suspense, wonderfully dark secrets, great pacing, wonderful characters (leading and supporting cast), intrigue, drama, romance, angst, thrills, chills…You name it, this book has it.
This was yet another example of great “small-town” fiction. I sure am glad to be living in a city, because those dreadful small-towns where everybody knows your name, no one locks their doors and everybody knows everybody else’s secrets are starting to creep me out. Quaint and homey, but hiding such rot underneath the nice veneer. *shiver* Ms. Rose depicted small-town Dutton’s secrets, Georgia with masterful aplomb, gruesome and chilling details, and goose-bumps-raising “honesty”.
And she’s not done, oh no. Because it appears the first two books in this Vartanian trilogy were just an appetizer to what comes next, and I can’t wait to start.
The main story, the suspense, the drama, and the thriller was so engaging, I wouldn’t have minded if Ms. Rose forgot to throw some romance into the mix. Well, she hasn’t forgotten, and while I always say this in my reviews for Ms. Rose’s novels, in this book, what happened between Alex and Daniel sure did take my mind off the other stuff going on, providing a much needed breather. Because this wasn’t simple entertainment like her previous books were (despite the theme), this was a rather “heavy” book and those lighter pauses sure helped.