Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/product_reviews/pr_id/114768
ASIN: 006302134X
ID #114768
  (Rated: 13+)
Product Type: Book
Reviewer: Choco’s gone nuts -Mwaahaha!
Review Rated: ASR
Amazon's Price: $ 27.99
Product Rating:
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Summary of this Book...
I read this book, firstly, because I’m a fan of Nicci French, and I’ve read a lot of their books. But, a couple of months ago, I read their “Secret Smile” novel, and I found myself questioning my previous feelings about the husband and wife writing team. So, I wanted to read another book of theirs to prove myself “Secret Smile” was a temporary blip. However, I’m not entirely convinced that it was.

I enjoyed this book, but it didn’t have any of the psychological fear and suspense that I’ve previously loved in Nicci French books. This one is about a woman whose friend finds a dead body found in her shed. She is charged with the murder and taken to prison where she is placed on remand awaiting trial. The main character, Tabitha, sacks her lawyer because she can't convince him that she is innocent. She then take up her own defence, and decides she will represent herself. So, we see her speaking to the set of people who would have had access to the victim and had the opportunity to kill him, and reviewing all the pieces of evidence from prison.

Unfortunately, I didn’t really like Tabitha. I didn’t warm to her, and I didn’t really care whether or not she was found guilty until near the end when she finally became someone I rooted for.

The plot is clever. The murder plot, that is, not necessarily the book’s plot. I found myself constantly trying to figure out who was the murderer, who would have had the motive and opportunity. And I didn’t guess it. Not at all. The ending is really good. Both the conclusion of the trial and the conclusion of the novel. I had a feeling Stuart’s paedophile tendencies must be a part of the conclusion. But I didn’t guess how.

What I really liked is how Nicci French turned everything on its head. In this novel, the murder victim is someone we aren’t supposed to like. The “murderer,” however, we have sympathy for.

All in all, I enjoyed reading this. It’s not Nicci French’s finest moment, but it is a good, solid story.
This type of Book is good for...
Fans of whodunnits. Fans of mysteries. It was a quick read, and would be good to take along to the beach.
I especially liked...
The last quarter of the book. I loved the ending. I loved how clever the murder plot was.
I didn't like...
I didn't like Tabitha, and I didn't root for her as I would have liked to. I also felt a bit detached from the story. Because Tabitha wasn't experiencing the events as we read — rather, she was experiencing most of the story through the CCTV footage from the shop. This is a good idea for a story, but it just distanced me.
When I finished reading this Book I wanted to...
I still need to read another Nicci French that reminds me of why I love them.
This Book made me feel...
A little disappointed. But, also, I was on the edge of my seat as we reached the conclusion.
The author of this Book...
Has let me down again. For many, many years, I have said Nicci French is my favourite thriller/crime. psychological writer. But, the last two books I've read have fallen short, in my opinion.
I recommend this Book because...
It's worth it in the end because you realise how clever it is. It does keep you guessing which is good. It's very hard to guess the outcome.
I don't recommend this Book because...
It's not completely immersive. You don't feel like you're witnessing the murder and the murderer. The characters aren't particularly likeable.
Created Jun 14, 2021 at 6:42am • Submit your own review...

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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/product_reviews/pr_id/114768