This is the second book in the Aspen Adams series, a suspense series by Daryl Wood Gerber who I came to know about by reading her cozy mysteries. I was a little apprehensive when I started her first book in the series, but after reading a review by a respected blogger (James J. Cudney) and a little convo on Goodreads, I’m glad I tried this series, because I found that I really like it. It’s not that much more intense than a regular cozy–and some of those can be fairly intense at times. I can definitely say that I enjoy Daryl Wood Gerber’s mysteries no matter if it’s cozy or suspense.
My Goodreads review:
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
And to think I was afraid to start this series since I was (wrongly) thinking that due to its more serious covers, that it would be one of those scary thrillers that I’m not a fan of, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. It just moves at a little quicker pace than the cozies I’ve come to love from this author, the murder scenes while not seriously graphic are a little more defined but still not gross or anything, and some things are just a little more serious, but that’s all good.
I’ve come to really like these characters too! Aspen is amazing how she’s taken in her fourteen-year-old niece Candace, and Candace is a really likable kid now that she’s away from her mom. It’s so cute how she’s kind of protective of her aunt Aspen. I love that Aspen and Det. Nick didn’t waste any time getting together, and they appear to be in a very good place. He’s incredibly patient with her need to investigate but at the same time, he’s sweet and protective but not overly smothering, because Aspen is a very independent lady. She and Nick do work well together. Of course, I can’t forget good old aunt Max who owns a detective agency and is Aspen’s boss while training her in the ways of private investigation.
I honestly had pegged the correct person as the killer, but the motive was so tangled and twisted that it was actually fun winding down all the various paths that led to Aspen figuring it out. I had no idea why I thought this person was guilty, but I just felt that way. The showdown was really exciting, and I was relieved that Aspen had thought ahead to make sure Nick and backup were also stationed near. The ending was a very sweet one for Aspen’s bestie Gwen too. It’ll be interesting to see where the next case takes these characters.