Say You’re Sorry – Karen Rose (5 *****)

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I was fortunate to receive this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

Eleanor ‘Daisy’ Dawson is a recovering alcoholic, who fights the demons of her past on a daily basis. With the help of her best friend Trish and her therapy dog Brutus, she maintains her sobriety one day at a time. Working presently as a radio personality on a busy morning show, she keeps herself busy, particularly with the local animal shelter’s adoption program.

While walking home one evening, she is unexpectedly attacked and pulled into an alley. She fends off her attacker, but not before he says some things to her, leading her to believe he’s taken other women. And then she realizes she holds a locket in her hand – a locket that she must have pulled off her attacker’s neck in the scuffle. Sacramento PD Detective Rafe Sokolov, Daisy’s friend and landlord, is called to the scene.

FBI Special Agent Gideon Reynolds has his own demons to fight. Escaping from the Church of Second Eden, an abusive, cult-like society when he was 13, he continues to search for the group’s location, as an adult. Then he receives a call from his close friend Rafe, who explains to him about Daisy’s attack and the locket she grabbed – almost identical to a tattoo Gideon once had on his chest. Gideon joins the group as the police interview Daisy, and its instant attraction for both of them.

As the investigation heats up, the FBI allows Gideon to re-open the investigation into the cult, while he provides protection of sorts for Daisy, concerned her attacker may try again. A second victim is discovered, with evidence that links to many other homicide victims, and the search for a killer commences…but the killer has set his sights on Daisy and Gideon…

I have been a fan of Karen Rose for years, and she has outdone herself with this novel! A fantastic police-procedural with all of the mystery, drama, and edge-of-your-seat suspense you could ask for, with a little romance thrown in as well. I could NOT put it down!! I’m hoping for more of Gideon & Daisy in future novels!! Awesome!! One of the best books I’ve read in a while!!

The Rule Of Law – John Lescroart

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I was fortunate to receive this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

Dismas Hardy and his colleagues are preparing to resurrect their old law firm now that contender Ron Jameson has recently unseated Wes Farrell and assumed the role of District Attorney for the California district. Jameson, in assuming the office, has started a very regimented administration, quite unlike the relaxed office of Farrell, and seems to have it in for Dis and his colleagues.

Phyllis, Dis’s secretary and longtime employee has been missing work with little explanation and this has Dis worried. Suddenly, she’s arrested by the DA’s office for accessory to murder, and Dis immediately steps up to defend her, and learns some very interesting information about his quiet, reliable secretary.

Meanwhile the alleged shooter, a young immigrant girl, supposedly commits suicide in prison, allowing the DA to close the case in triumph. But the homicide inspectors investing the case aren’t quite sure it was that simple – and they’re not quite sure about the new DA either. One of them suspects he is a killer.

Thus begins the newest thriller with Dis at the helm, as he and his team attempt to investigate the possibility that Jameson was part of a homicide several years ago, while trying to vindicate Phyllis from a trumped up charge. Meanwhile Jameson and his team work just as hard to bring Dis & Wes’s alleged misdeeds to light, culminating in an surprising sequence of events that will leave you shaking your head and asking for more!

This book does a nice job of tying up some loose ends from prior Dis Hardy adventures, as well as illustrating the sanctuary city of San Francisco, and how a modern-day underground railroad works to assist immigrants to safety. Whether you’re a fan of Dis, or you pick this book up as a standalone, it is a great read!!

The Promise – Teresa Driscoll

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I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.
Back in a private religious boarding school, teenagers, best friends & roommates Beth, Sally & Carol are unwitting accomplices in a death. Not knowing what else to do, they cover it up as best they can, and promise to never say another word to anyone about the events of that fateful night.

Years later, each have their own lives – Beth is happily married with two children, and she remains close with Sally, who is having relationship struggles of her own. Carol, however, for reasons unknown, has distanced herself from the group, partially due to her relationship with a world traveling businessman. And then the girls receive letters that their old boarding school is going to be sold and demolished – with the real potential of exposing a secret many years old.

As the girls search for Carol, in a desperate attempt to ensure that the promise isn’t broken, they also endeavor to protect the events of that night at all costs. As Carol is located and brought unwillingly into the fold with secrets of her own, strange things start to happen. Beth receives warnings in her email and via Facebook, and her husband is badly injured by a hit and run driver. But no one else knew of the long ago events of that night…or did they??

Told in past and present glimpses into the lives of these three women, their story gradually comes to light and just when you think you understand the events of that long ago night….another curveball or three are tossed in that have you frantically turning the pages to get to the very last page! This one kept me up well into the night. A great read from Teresa Driscoll!!

The Crooked Street – Brian Freeman

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I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

Frost Easton is back in what could be his most dangerous assignment yet! Years ago, Frost and best friend Denny parted ways over a girl. Frost hasn’t seen him since – until his doorbell rings, and he open the door to find Denny there – and he collapses in front of him, managing to utter one word before his death… ‘Lombard’.

A Detective with the San Francisco PD, Frost quickly learns that there was nothing ordinary about his ex-friend’s murder, as he was killed with an unusual poison. Tasked with the investigation, Frost learns that Denny owned a large yacht in the area and was known for his high-profile cruises with the elite. But why would anyone want him dead?

Shortly afterward, he meets PI Dick Coyle under unusual circumstances, as Dick believes Denny was killed by a serial killer. Initially Frost is skeptical, but an unusual finding quickly changes his mind, and he and Coyle join forces in the search for a killer. But Frost quickly learns that he has caught the attention of a very powerful person, who will stop at nothing to keep his secrets. Unable to trust anyone, not even his chief, Frost attempts to take down the mysterious Lombard…or he’ll die trying…

A fabulous new read from Brian Freeman that will leave you shaking your head in disbelief long after the book is finished. Non-stop, edge-of-your-seat adventure – I dare you to be able to put it down before the last page is turned!! Simply awesome!!

Watcher In The Woods – Kelley Armstrong

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I was fortunate to receive this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

This novel was a very pleasant surprise!! Even more so when I learned that it was part of a series! I can’t wait to become fully immersed in Rockton and its people!

Rockton, buried deep in the Yukon of Canada, can’t be found on any map. There’s no internet or cable, and electricity and other desirables are carefully rationed. It is a small society, full of persons who need to hide, some seeking asylum due to crimes committed, others are victims, in a sanctuary of sorts, shielded from those who seek to harm them. It’s an invisible town, run by ‘the council’ and policed by Sheriff Eric Dalton, along with Detective Casey Duncan and a deputy. People have job assignments, sign on for specific spans, and there’s even a militia, who patrols the borders and keeps people safe within.

I’ve surmised that this story starts shortly after a prior one ends – a townsperson has been shot, with a bullet lodged in his back, and no doctor among them who can extract it. Casey’s estranged sister is a neurosurgeon – and she and Eric head out on a supply run and use the time to intercept her to see if she’s be willing to help. Much to Casey’s surprise, she agrees, and unbeknownst to the council, they sneak her into the compound. Meanwhile, a US Marshall has been found sniffing around the grounds, but is unwilling to share with Casey & Eric, who or what he’s after. Then he’s shot dead, leaving the duo to investigate the possibilities. Just what was the Marshall up to? Who can Eric & Casey trust? How much can ‘the council’ be trusted in a place where no one is who they claim to be??

This book was actually quite good!! I love the references to, and mysteries of both Casey’s and Eric’s past, as well as the crimes or situations that have brought some very colorful characters to Rockton. Certain characters, although bad people, resonated with me, and others intrigued me. I cannot wait to read more of Eric & Casey’s adventures, as well as backtrack to put the missing pieces together. Definitely an intriguing series, and well worth the read!!

The Boy – Tami Hoag

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I was fortunate to receive this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

Detective’s Nick Fourcade and Antoinette ‘Annie” Broussard are back in this newest installment from Tami Hoag.

In sleepy Bayou Breaux, Louisiana, a young boy is found brutally murdered in his own bedroom, while his mother somehow witnesses the assault, yet survives, and is able to flee the home and summon help. Detective Nick Fourcade is called to investigate the scene, while Annie Broussard heads to the hospital to connect with the surviving and grieving mother.

As the investigation begins and the team dives into the lives of Genevieve Gauthier and her now deceased son KJ, startling facts come to light. KJ’s father is in absentia, and KJ was often left with a 12-year-old daughter of a schoolmate, who is now missing, as Detectives look to interview her. With the town up in arms over the present events, the team must consider the mother as a suspect in the crime, as well as search for an elusive killer.

Meanwhile the new regimented police chief, Kelvin Dutrow knocks heads with Nick every chance he gets, threatening to fire not only Nick, but Annie from the team. And a grieving father lashes out at Fourcade and the department, convinced that his disabled daughter’s sexual assault investigation is being neglected for the murder.

Did Genevieve kill her son out of frustration and despair over single motherhood? Or is a far more sinister explanation awaiting discovery???

I have been reading books Ms. Hoag for the last 25 years, and I have to say this was one of her best yet!! She just keeps getting better!! With rich, dynamic characters, intriguing settings, and complex storylines, this book, like her others, kept me up far into the night! Un-put-downable! Whether you’re a long-standing fan, or new to Tami Hoag, this book is an absolute MUST READ!!!

Her Pretty Bones – Carla Kovach

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I was fortunate to receive this book as an Advance Reader Copy from Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.

A young man is traveling along a country road in rural England, when a back door of the van in front of him suddenly opens, and a girl’s body falls out in front of his car. As Toby steps on the brakes, and calls for help, the van continues on its journey, seemingly unaware of what has transpired.

Despite it being her weekend off, Detective Inspector Gina Harte is called in to work the case. Fresh off her most recent case, and a dangerous assault at her home, Gina is still struggling a bit with anxiety, and with her short-lived relationship w/ her commanding officer DCI Briggs. As she and partner DS Jacob Driscoll meet at the hospital in hopes of interviewing their victim, they learn that the only words she’s uttered are ‘help her’. But who is she referring to??

Shortly after the investigation begins, a body is found buried in a shallow grave on a recently sold piece of property. As the two cases run concurrently, forensics are able to identify the young women, and the team makes a startling discovery, which links the two cases together. And nearby, a desperate mother is searching frantically for her missing daughter…

This was my second Carla Kovach novel featuring Gina Harte and it will NOT be my last! This was a GREAT read! Full of action, suspense and drama you come to expect from mystery/police procedurals, I had a very hard time putting this one down!! Time to read the one I’m missing, as I eagerly await more of DI Harte from Ms. Kovach!!