Tag Archives: thriller

Review: In the Clearing by Robert Dugoni

3 Stars

This is the third book in the Tracy Crosswhite series.  You could probably read this particular novel as a stand-alone, but you will definitely get more out of the story if you read the previous two installments.

Once again we find Detective Tracy Crosswhite once again taking on another unsolved cold case.  She is asked by Jenny, a former police academy classmate to continue her father’s work and find the killer of a young Native American woman who everyone else assumed committed suicide.  But her family never believed the official story and neither did the investigative detective, Jenny’s father.  Tracy begins to follow up on the evidence and she begins to probe into the small town’s dark secrets.  Secrets that the town seems hell bent on keeping.  Is Detective Crosswhite going to be able to solve this case or is she going to become a victim too?

Again, this is another case that seems to hit close to home for Tracy.  Her sister was murdered and she spent twenty years trying to solve her case and bring the killer to justice.  Since then, she seems to be drawn to cases that are very similar to her sister’s murder.  She gets very personally invested and involved, which causes trouble for her both with her superiors in the department and in her personal life as well.  But she just can’t seem to let these cases go and while it’s a great thing for the victim, it’s playing havoc on her own life.

There is plenty of action and the investigation never lags.  The interaction between the characters is always solid and believable and the characters are very well thought out and none of them are one-dimensional.  Some end up being a little bit of a cliche.  Especially Tracy’s boss, Captain Nolasco.  But the victim’s brother also follows a stereotype and not a very flattering one when it comes to describing Native American men.  But the main core of characters are very enjoyable and you find yourself really rooting for Tracy in more ways than one.

I was a little surprised at the climax, I really didn’t expect the reveal.  You think you know who the killer is, but there’s one last surprise for you in the end.  Watching Tracy work her investigative magic is always entertaining.  While I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I enjoyed the previous two, it was still a very solid installment in the series and I can’t wait to see what’s next for Detective Tracy Crosswhite.

 

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Review: The Short Drop by Matthew FitzSimmons

3 1/2 Stars.

I chose this title as my Kindle First for November.  For book lovers with Amazon Prime membership and you don’t already know about the Kindle First program, go look it up.

Ten years ago, Suzanne Lombard disappeared without a trace.  Her father, Benjamin Lombard, was a senator at the time, but now he is the vice-president and running for president.  It’s nearing the anniversary of her disappearance and her story is still a national obsession.  No one has given up on Suzanne, especially not Gibson Vaughn, her best childhood friend.  Now a legendary hacker and former marine, Gibson is approached by the former head of Benjamin Lombard’s security team with an offer that he can’t refuse.  A chance to bring new life to the investigation into Suzanne’s disappearance.

Soon they discover conspiracies and secrets surrounding Benjamin Lombard.  Each layer that is uncovered reveals yet another set of mysteries, ultimately leading them to discover what really happened to Suzanne a decade ago.  Each twist brings a new turn.  Filled with suspense you never know what’s going to happen next.  What is the truth and what lengths will the other side go to make sure that it never sees the light of day?  Gibson always needs to keep one step ahead or he risks not only never finding out what happened to Suzanne, but his own life and the lives of those he loves.

There was a lot of suspense and a lot of twists and turns in this book.  Many of them were a complete surprise and I really didn’t see them coming.  There were a few that became pretty obvious as the book went on, but they were still well done and the dots were well connected when the story was finally revealed at the end.  I like how it was tied up for the most part.  I do with it had gone on a bit longer so that a few more loose ends were tied up, especially in regards to George Abe and his team.

The character development was very well done and it was very easy to empathize with Gibson and he was a very believable character.  Most of the secondary characters received the same attention and didn’t feel like cardboard cutouts.  I understand the backstory of Gibson’s ex-wife and how his family fits into the puzzle, but it was one of the loose ends that never truly got tied up in the end and it really bothered me.

If you want a fast moving plot with lots of action, lots of suspense and twists and turns.  Pick up The Short Drop and I don’t think you will be disappointed.

 

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