Sara-Jayne Townsend is a published crime and horror writer and likes books in which someone dies horribly. She is founder and Chair Person of the T Party Writers’ Group. http://sarajaynetownsend.weebly.com/
Twenty-five years ago in the woods near the Hoh River in Seattle, three boys were kidnapped. One did not come home. A quarter of a decade later, a family of four is found brutally murdered, the words “thirteen days” scratched near their lifeless bodies. Homicide detective Alice Madison believes the murders are linked. And she has thirteen days to prove it.
Thus reads the blurb on this debut novel, billed as “the most compelling and chilling crime novel of 2013”. With such a fanfare I was looking forward to reading this novel. I have to say I didn’t feel it quite lived up to the hype.
It does take a while to get started, and that was the main problem. Alice Madison appears to spend quite a long time on a wild goose chase, desperate to find the link between the two crimes that appear completely unconnected. There’s a lot of unnecessary detail, and some very annoying ‘head-hopping’.
But despite this the book is worth sticking with, and eventually it picks up pace, leading up to what is a very exciting conclusion. Alice Madison is also a very good character. She’s young and inexperienced as a homicide detective, but she’s strong-willed and likeable, and has what it takes to be the lead character in a series of crime novels. I have no doubt that Alice, like the author, will grow into what will undoubtedly be a well-loved and popular series.
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