31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on July 28, 2009
I CAN SEE YOU is one of Karen Rose's finest books to date. This book will make you scared, thrilled and fascinated at the same time. Eve Wilson is a wonderfully real heroine, who was disfigured by an attacker several years before. Her way of coping was to escape into a virtual world where she could create a beautiful online identity. When she finally claws her way back to the real world, she wants to help others regain self confidence. As a graduate student of psychology, she has students play the virtual reality game in the hopes they will learn to socialize more effectively in the real world. When several of her "students" turn up dead, Eve joins forces with troubled Homicide Detective Noah Webster to find the man murdering these people. In their search for the killer, they learn to trust one another.
What sets this book apart from so many others is the brilliant way Rose makes you think anyone could be the killer. When reading the book I found myself shouting at the heroine not to trust this person, then that person. Be forewarned: Don't read this book at night.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Author Karen Rose is a New York Times best-selling author and award-winner. Other titles include: Nothing to Fear, Count to Ten, You Can't Hide, Die For Me, Scream For Me, Don't Tell, I'm Watching you, Have You Seen Her, and Kill For Me. When she's not writing, she's practicing for her next karate belt test. Karen resides in Florida with her husband, (an avid fisherman), and her two daughters, (who also like to write).
Eve Wilson was finally emerging out of her dark place after being horribly scarred in a vicious assault. Terrified and ashamed, she escaped into the online realm to cope, and is now helping others to do the same through her psychology graduate program. Moonlighting as a bartender, Eve is constantly in contact with decorated officers who frequent the bar, but one detective has had her interest for a year since he first walked in. When her test subjects begin turning up dead, staged to be suicides, it's that very homicide detective, Noah Webster, that she turns to. He's one of the few who believe that these are connected murders, so Eve soon becomes his online guide and learns that the very attractive detective has his own scars that run just as deep. As Noah and Eve hunt down the madman who always appears one step ahead of them, they discover Eve may be his next target. Together, they try to overcome their pasts and learn to trust again, all the while trying to save each other from the danger that lurks closer than they think.
I'm so glad I was sent another of Karen's books to review. She never disappoints. Flawed, flesh-and-blood characters and power-house endings are always in store from this talented writer. Her understanding of human nature makes for a psychological twist and turn, edge of your seat, romantic suspense that is both chilling and steamy from the get-go. Admittedly, I knew who the killer was half-way through the book, though in no way was I deterred from reading. The secondary characters were a delight and added to the storyline nicely. I don't know if she has this in mind, but I'd love to see spin-off books on Olivia and David, Callie and Jack, or Tom and Liza. The plot flowed smoothly and the setting was spectacular as well. Bravo!
Author and Reviewer
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 6, 2010
Eve Wilson a graduate student doing her thesis
on the virtual world to improve self-esteem.
The role play game Shadowland is a community
computer game. The player's real names are
anonymous. Eve's psychology department recruited
subjects for her study.
Eve broke the rules at the University and her own
ethics. The test subjects were more than numbers
on a page to Eve. The test subjects were assured
their privacy. Eve started Pandora's Facades to
observe her subjects. Dr. Donner, her graduate
advisor, would have Eve expelled if he knew what
she was doing.
A serial killer targeted Eve's test subjects who
are connected to Shadowland. He's making it look
like suicides. Detective Noah Wilson and Eve believe
her subjects didn't commit suicides.
The Killer was leaving the scene after murdering his
4th victim. He saw one of the detective entering the
neighborhood. The killer knew then that Eve was
working with the police.
Noah Webster is the lead detective on the case. His
wife and son were killed in a car accident. Noah is
a recovering alcoholic who has been sober for ten
years. Eve and Noah are attracted to each other.
Eve left Chicago for a new start in Minneapolis. She
was assaulted when she was a teenager and left for
dead. Eve and Noah are two lost people who finally
found happiness. Neither one of them thought they
would find love.
I Can See You is a great mystery. Karen Rose did a
superb job with her main characters. The secondary
characters are very supportive of Eve. The story
line has everything, including mystery, horror,
romance and suspense. Who is the serial killer?
I was shocked with the twist at the end.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on August 13, 2009
In one way, this was the best mystery I've read in some time. Although I had the killer on my suspect list very early, I was kept guessing by other "suspects" until just before he was revealed. On that basis alone the book deserves at least 3 stars. I normally know the culprit from his or her first introduction.
In another way, however, this was the least appealing from the romance interest standpoint. Very disappointing as I had met the heroine in earlier books as well as other characters. Those other books were far more intense both from the mystery and relationship perspectives. This one was more intellectual - for me, at least. I "cared" about the hero and heroine but I wasn't as deeply drawn into that part of the story as I have been with all the previous Rose books.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 26, 2009
Eve Wilson survived a brutal attack only to be thrust into danger again two years later. Eve now survives by watching rather than experiencing life. Homicide detective, Noah Webster faces his own demons. A recovering alcoholic, Noah fights the urge to have a drink almost daily as he faces the horrors of his career and his painful past. Noah and Eve are thrust together when a serial killer targets the women in Eve's grad student project. Eve is studying the effect the virtual world can have on improving self esteem. The killer is using the women's insecurities against them. Noah and Eve are trying desperately to find the killer but the murders are piling up. As they try to solve the case their lives are put in danger when it becomes clear that Eve is the target.
I Can See You is one of those perfect books that I never wanted to see end. I was so drawn into the story and Noah and Eve's lives, I didn't want to leave. At the same time, the suspense was killing me and I needed to see how things would turn out. Noah is stoic and determined and the fedora he wears as part of the Hat Squad is charming. Eve doesn't stand a chance when he turns his intensity on her. I love the sincerity in which he expresses his feelings for her and that he doesn't give up on her. Eve is such a fighter. She's so beautiful, inside and out, but she's very hard on herself and it's heartbreaking at times. Noah and Eve were merely surviving day to day. They didn't start living again until they connected. The first time Noah and Eve make love is magical and meaningful. It brought a tear to my eye. I Can See You has excellent characterization, tons of twists and turns, and fantastic suspense. The villain is twisted, sadistic, and fascinating. I Can See You is extremely well written. From its eerie beginning to its dramatic and exciting ending, it's romantic suspense perfection. There are several characters from I Can See You who definitely have stories to tell. I hope I'll get to read about them.
Reviewed for Joyfully Reviewed
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I have never read a Karen Rose book before I read her newest book I Can See You. It is a Mystery/Thriller book, that definitely kept me reading, although I don't recommend reading it while alone in your house at night!
Rose has this book filled with plots and sub-plots that it definitely has a lot going on. I also loved how even though I guessed who the killer was, she offered various "suspects" to keep me second-guessing myself. The book stars Eva Wilson, who has brutally attacked and disfigured several years before. In order to cope, she throws herself into an online world and then helps others with their lack of self-confidence. So not only does Eva have her own problems to deal with, but she also now has to deal with her "students" turning up dead. The story reminded me of a Lifetime Movie I saw years ago, but this story by Karen Rose had more substance, romance, and characters.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone who is looking for some suspense. I also am going to check out Karen Rose's past books, as if they are as good as this one, then I am sure I will love them.
I received this book to review.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on April 18, 2012
Book Club Review
I CAN SEE YOU
Our book club's book for April was I CAN SEE YOU, by Karen Rose. As a group, we'd not had much experience with Rose, who is apparently pretty well known. She certainly seems connected - there are blurbs on the back of the book from James Patterson, Tess Gerritsen, Lorenzo Carcaterra, and other luminaries.
Based on the title, you would expect a book about a stalker, and that's what you get. The plot can be summed up pretty easily: A serial killer is stalking and killing women in Minneapolis. A new body falls every 40 pages or so. This being a serial killer, of course he leaves a calling card based on his own personal fetish: he dresses the women up, leaves a pair of shoes near them, and then hangs them on a noose to make it appear a suicide. He also likes to leave windows open.
The intriguing parts of the book (which, sadly, aren't many) involve the killer's finding his victims through an online virtual reality game called ShadowLand (much like Second Life). A local grad student, Eve, is using ShadowLand to discover if introverts can develop their social skills in ShadowLand and then apply them to real life. But she breaks the double-blind nature of the experiment and learns the identities of the test subjects - so she realizes that a murderer is on the loose when she starts reading about their deaths. Of course, that makes her a target. Luckily, she works in a bar frequented by local cops, including one - named Noah Webster - for whom she has the hots, and who has the hots for her. She has a tragic past (someone tried to kill her), he has a tragic past (dead wife and child, killed in a car accident), so much of the book is spent with the two of them playing approach-and-retreat.
I realize that this review is sounding quite cynical, but there's a reason for it. As a group, we gave this one a resounding thumbs down. So formulaic, right down to the killer's identity - which every single person in our reading group of 11 figured out. And Lord, does this book go on and on and on. It's about 500 pages and could have been half that length. For some reason, the killer has targeted six women - he keeps talking about his goal of six. We're never told why he chose that number, so we speculated that the publisher said "OK, Miss Rose, you have 500 pages - figure out how many people you can kill off in that number of pages." But the killer murders a lot more than six, because he must of course eliminate anyone who is coming close to figuring out his identity; plus the world needs to be ridded of prostitutes, who are "bonus kills" beyond the targeted six.
So, the plot is downright boring, but it's the burgeoning romance between Eve and Noah that had most of us climbing the walls. While the reader feels sorry for both of them due to their tragic pasts, they spend so much time dancing around each other, having the same conversation over and over and over, that we felt trapped in Groundhog Day. I can't speak for everyone else, but by the time they got to the sex scene, I skipped the chapter.
At the end of the day, we just couldn't find many good things to say about this book. Writing is competent; plotting is weak, and so are characters. As a club, our tastes are varied, and it's rare that we all give a book a thumbs up or a thumbs down, and we do sort of pride ourselves on being open-minded readers. But the decision on this one was unanimous: not a good book. Pass this one by.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on July 31, 2009
As other reviewers have already covered the plot, I will refrain from doing so. Karen Rose is my favorite author, so I was incredibly excited upon receiving my copy of I Can See You. While I was somewhat disappointed with her last book, Kill for Me, I Can See You sucked me in from the very beginning. I will say that I could see pieces from her other books bleeding into the plot and the characters, and I wondered if this would turn me off in the long run. After staying up until 2:30 am in order to finish the book, I am happy to say that while seeing these things definitely gave me pause, they did not detract from this story. Noah Webster, though showing shades of Abe Reagan and Reed Solliday, was, I feel, Ms. Rose's best written hero to date. He displayed a depth of character that I have not seen in any of her prior heroes. Indeed, I became more attached to Noah than to Eve, the heroine.
The plot in I Can See You is definitely more convoluted than any in her prior books, with several different subplots. I found myself often stopping to refresh my memory as to how someone fit into the story. And while she gives several options for the "villain," it was apparent quite early on who that person was.
Regardless, I Can See You was a great read (as evidenced by the fact that I couldn't put it down!). Another homerun for Ms. Rose.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 19, 2011
I am a pretty avid Karen Rose fan I must admit, and I have been slowly working through her older books I have yet to read. Before I started this one I glanced on other Amazon reviews to see what other people thought. One thing that frustrated me was a low rating this book was given due to the `romance' aspect of it. The one thing I do know about Karen Rose, and something potential readers should know is that her genre is `romantic suspense'. The genre kind of gives it away, but if you only want murder and mystery and no more then maybe this isn't for you. Myself, I see nothing wrong with a bit of romance and lust thrown in over a serial killer or two; I find it `lightens the load' so to speak.
This book in particular, like many others of hers, is not a short one. The hardback is a pretty hefty weight and all in all has nearly 500 pages. As usual, it took me no more that one or two chapters to be drawn into the book. Once you have read a few of Karen Rose books you realise that various characters appear in more than one book. Although this is the case each of her books can be read as a stand alone. We meet Eve who is a woman (previously featuring in another book Nothing to Fear) with a past. She is trying to rebuild her life after a terrifying ordeal where she was kidnapped, tortured and left for dead. She works part time in a bar while studying her thesis which involves an online game called Shadowland.
The first thing that struck me about this book is the fact that this was a perfectly believable situation. With the online gaming world taking off it put the fear of God into me while reading it (ridiculous I know)! Pretty soon after meeting Eve we meet Noah Webster who is a copper with his own secrets and past. Along with his temperamental partner Jack we see them dragged into a case which should be a simple suicide. It becomes clear pretty quickly that it isn't the case and before long they are dealing with a serial killer.
The story is quite long and detailed with numerous suspect possibilities and just when I thought I had it figured out, I realised I was wrong. I was wondering if this book was a bit too long but by the halfway mark I literally couldn't put it down. Yes there is a predictable element of romance within the book and some pretty hot and steamy scenes towards the end, but to be fair the people involved had a very bad week and I think it was deserved:-)))
As I have read a fair few of her books now, I wouldn't say this is my favourite but was still a riveting read as usual. Overall, another great book by Karen Rose and one that I would highly recommend.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 7, 2009
Eve Wilson has spent the last few years of her life healing both internal and external wounds from an attack by a psychotic killer. It took her quite some time to even go out into the real world, but she's still not as comfortable there as she should be. In her fight to survive, Eve started playing an online virtual reality game, Shadowland, where you can be who you want to be without anyone ever knowing your true identity. Shadowland helped Eve, so now she believes it will help others that are hiding from reality, so she starts to study a group of people through the game to see how things will change for them. All is going well, until those test subjects start turning up dead due to supposed suicides, and now Eve thinks it's all her fault.
Noah Wilson, homicide detective for the local Hat Squad believes that these suicides are anything but that. He thinks these people have been murdered, and he's determined to track down the killer. With the help of Eve, his online tour guide of the virtual world, they will track a sadistic killer in hopes of saving the next person on his list.
I was hooked from the very first page of this book, and read more than half of it in one sitting. Rose has a way of describing both her characters and her plot so that it paints a perfect picture in your mind. You know what they say about a picture, it's worth a thousand words, and this book is worth just that and more.
Rose's characters are extremely well rounded. They are compassionate, determined, and generous, all characteristics that had me loving each and every one of them. I could not for the life of me figure out who the killer was beforehand, because Rose has a way of making her suspects look suspicious, yet innocent in their own way. I look forward to reading more of Rose's work, and plan on purchasing all books in her backlist. I'd also like to say, if this book were made into a film, I'd be one of the first people waiting in line at the theater!
I'd like to thank Miriam Parker of Hatchette Books for sending me a copy of this book to review. I'm extremely greatful to have been able to review this book before it's release date. I'll definitely be adding this book to my 'favorite books of the year' list.