Author: Mark Young
Genre: thriller novel
Target audience: adults
Why I read it:
I was sent a copy of this book by the author, free of charge. In return I promised to write an unbiased review. As simple as that 🙂 Without further ado, here how it goes:
Travis Mays, the main protagonist, teaches criminology classes at a local university in Idaho. He used to be a police investigator but he left after a tragic death of an informer who also happened to be a woman he loved. Now he thinks he escaped it all, hiding in the picturesque mountains near Lochsa River. Unfortunately the past won’t let him enjoy the quiet life as people connected to his last investigation are being murdered left right and centre. The deadly series is started, surprisingly, by somebody not exactly involved – the son of the tribal police chief, Tommy White Eagle, a lawyer who, among other clients, dealt with local casino owner. His sister, Jessie, and her father ask Travis to help the police solve the murder. Travis reluctantly agrees but soon enough his motivation will get to a definitely higher level as Jessie, his new love interest, is being targeted by the killer as well.
What I liked:
– the scenery of this novel was original and interesting to me (but, as I am not an American, I suppose it’s easy to make me feel so)
– some twists and turns of the plot were really unexpected
– the beginning was a bit slow but then I enjoyed the pace of narration
– the baddie’s characteristic was nicely done (I like baddies with some sense and psychological background)
– the author evidently did a lot of research, everything sounded more or less believable
– although the book was self-published it was edited impeccably – no typos or other mistakes (well-done Mrs Young!)
What I didn’t like:
– at the beginning the book seemed a bit bland and schematic (but I do admit it got better after first 100 pages)
– I am not a Tom Cruise fan so comparing the main protagonist’s looks to that actor didn’t warm me to him, quite the opposite in fact (if you hear some snarling right now don’t worry, it’s only me)
– there seemed to be a bit too much talking when I expected action.
– the characterization was a bit flat.
– the narration could have been a bit edgier from time to time.
This novel I would place somewhere in the middle – it wasn’t very bad and it wasn’t very good either. I would buy it to read on a plane but I wouldn’t regret leaving it there. What I lacked? Some distinctive traits and style, something that would distinguish this thriller from the other thrillers around. Overall I don’t regret reading it but I wish it was a bit different.