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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Left me breathless
Detective Sergeant Lincoln Munroe of the London, Ontario police department has been working very long hours trying to catch the serial killer who targets women while their husbands are at work at night. When he can get home to his family for a few hours sleep, his dreams are haunted by a skull and knife dripping blood in a forest. Then he is called off his urgent case to...
Published on July 19, 2012 by R. Larkin

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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing
Another Amazon freebie. The writing is professional, but it was almost a complete failure in structure. It read much like a movie plot, fairly predictable police procedural fare. The angst-ridden detective is getting a little old, isn't it? I could not bring myself to like the main character - Detective Lincoln Munroe - very much, even if his personal history is...
Published on December 2, 2012 by Tigger


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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Left me breathless, July 19, 2012
This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Detective Sergeant Lincoln Munroe of the London, Ontario police department has been working very long hours trying to catch the serial killer who targets women while their husbands are at work at night. When he can get home to his family for a few hours sleep, his dreams are haunted by a skull and knife dripping blood in a forest. Then he is called off his urgent case to use his archeological skills in the excavation of a long-buried body in a remote area. He recognizes the woods from his nightmares, and wonders if he may be cracking under the strain of his high-profile case.

I finished this gripping first novel, part police procedural and part thriller, in a day and immediately downloaded the sequel. While I would have enjoyed a little more description of the procedural work, the woven stories of old and new murders kept me turning pages. The formatting of the ebook is a little odd - unusual and very tiny typeface, and there are a very few typos, but they didn't interfere with my enjoyment of the story.

An excellent first effort, and I look forward to more from this author.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling!, August 1, 2012
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Paperback)
"A Dream of Death" is such an exciting and thrilling story that I stayed up late because I didn't want to stop reading. Harrison Drake does a great job of creating a plot which follows the trail of clues that lead to the solving of two crimes - one in the present and one from the past. All of the characters are well-developed. This includes a look at the life of the main character, Detective Lincoln Monroe. In my opinion, the incorporation of the Monroe's life outside of work pushes this story above other crime novels in which you read only about the work done by the police and detectives. The details, along with the emotional reactions to events in both areas of his life, give the character much more depth and makes him seem more real. If you read crime novels, this one should definitely be on your reading list. - Sheila Rae Myers, Author
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars authorpholloway, November 6, 2012
This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This is one of the best fresh new authors I've found. His main character, Lincoln Monroe is so human that I felt I was right there with him. The main plot of this book turns out to be a secondary plot. The stress from the case he is working has made him start having dreams so real that he is not sure sometimes whether he is dreaming or hallucinating. Something horrible happened to him as a child and that's where his nightmares are coming from. He has apparently been dealing with Post Traumatic Stress, with delayed onset, since the new case has started but doesn't understand what's happening to him.

I really like the book. It was fast paced and kept me turning pages and I was sorry to say goodbye to the characters at the end. When I realized there were more books with these characters, I was delighted and can't wait to read more by this author.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, December 2, 2012
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Tigger "kkegley" (Little Elm, TX United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Another Amazon freebie. The writing is professional, but it was almost a complete failure in structure. It read much like a movie plot, fairly predictable police procedural fare. The angst-ridden detective is getting a little old, isn't it? I could not bring myself to like the main character - Detective Lincoln Munroe - very much, even if his personal history is interesting (great-great-grandson of a slave, all the firstborn sons named Lincoln, after the President). He just seemed to be a very weak person overall, and I suppose that's a reflection of the author's intent to make him 'real' and 'flawed'. Well, he was a little too flawed for my taste, from his bursting into tears every couple of pages to predictably cheating on his wife with the young female partner. Another little peeve of mine is the way characters who are parents will go on and on about their kids, just like the annoying parents who do this in real life. Every parent is in love with his/her own kids, and I'm simply not interested in how smart and beautiful and precocious and wonderul everybody's kid is. I always want to say, "Well, yours and everyone else's." Bottom line, I have to deal with that in everyday real life and would rather get away from it in fiction. I try to read books where the characters do not have children so there won't be so much focus on that, but obviously that's not always possible.

The author tried to weave two very separate plots into one narrative, and it didn't work. The primary plot, about a serial killer targeting women whose husbands or boyfriends work a night shift so that the woman will be found when the spouse comes home, could have been really good, but the author completely dropped the ball, almost as if he'd changed his mind about what was really driving this story. Although you find out a little bit about the psychology of the killer, it's given very little time. The entire book should have been about this storyline, giving us more insight about the killer and his motives. There were many ways to achieve this, but instead, the killer was identified and found so easily that it was almost an afterthought. It seemed obvious that the author wanted to pay more attention to his other narrative, about the detective being plagued by dreams that seem to be a memory of something from his childhood - a camping trip with his father gone terribly wrong when a child predator happens to be in the same place at the same time. This storyline too had terrific potential, and should have been an entirely different novel on its own.

Again - fairly professional, skilled writing, two excellent plot ideas, but poor execution + an unlikable main character = a disappointment overall.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too Wordy, May 18, 2013
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Paperback)
I liked the characters in this novel, but it was far too wordy and had too many scenes that didn't move the story forward. Lincoln Munroe's family life and history, for example, were boring and simply dragged the story. By the time I got to 50%, I started skimming.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I want to read the series, June 6, 2013
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Ugh. I suppose I shouldn't be such a reverse chauvinist, but I got very disgusted with this detective who couldn't seem to get through a day, or even a chapter without crying. It was a good story, but I became irritated with this guy. I didn't cry that much going through menopause. I plan to read the rest of the series, and I'm hoping Detective Munroe has greater emotional stability and can handle his problems without blubbering through the next two books.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars annoying, July 1, 2013
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I tried so hard to finish reading this book but I finally gave up at 70% completion. There's a lot better writers and stories to waste your time on than this book. The male protagonist has such a weak personality and a crybaby. Every time something good might happen, the main character just managed to screw up everything.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Horrific grammar, January 21, 2014
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I found four major grammatical errors by the time I reached page 5, severe enough to impact understanding and enjoyment. This is the earliest I have ever been compelled to abandon a reading effort. Amazon, please, PLEASE, vet your authors before allowing them to publish works for which I would fail a freshman English student.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unconventional and Thrilling, December 28, 2012
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This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Harrison Drake's debut police procedural is both unconventional and thrilling. There is a serial killer (a strangler) on the loose in the Canadian province of Ontario and the story's protagonist, Lincoln Munroe, is charged with the task of finding said killer, with the help of his young yet promising partner Kara Jameson. Munroe's personal and professional world get turned upside down when he starts seeing visions of a cold case unrelated to the strangler, but not unrelated to Munroe. At the outset, these visions give the reader the impression that this story is delving into the paranormal realm.

For those who like their detectives to ride in on a stallion, white knight-style, this book isn't for you. Munroe is flawed and this adds to the drama of the story's primary subplot. Some may view Munroe as unlikeable due to some of the decisions he makes but all he proves is that even our real-life heroes can be majorly flawed...they are human, after all. If anything, I found some of the characters around him, those that are supposed to be his staunchest supporters to be the most "dislikeable." That's not to say that some of their feelings aren't justified, nor does their "annoying" behavior detract from the story.

As a police story, this story does the job, particularly in its second act. When Munroe and Jameson were hot on the killer's trail, I found myself unable to put the book down, even reading it on my Kindle app on my phone while waiting in line at the post office.

The reason this story gets four stars instead of five from me, however, is that after a stellar second act, the third act seemed to lose steam. Perhaps that's more of a comment on how good the second act was and not so much an indictment on the third act. I don't know. But for me, the search for the killer came to an end much too soon, leaving the uncovering of the meaning behind Munroe's visions to cover the remaining twenty percent of the book. This would be okay if the visions' resolution hadn't come about thanks to a lightly sweetened sentimentality as opposed to true detective work. And to compound things, when the visions' final twist presents itself to Munroe and to the reader, the book ends very soon thereafter, leaving Drake's characters virtually no time to reflect and capitalize on that sentimentality.

Overall, if you're looking for a good serial killer story full of ups and emotional downs, a sense of verisimilitude as it pertains to detective work and a protagonist with depth, this book is definitely worth your time and could stand on its own if you choose not to read its sequel, Blue Rubicon.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good read, November 3, 2012
This review is from: A Dream of Death (Detective Lincoln Munroe, Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
A little slow to get into but did finally get my interest. Could have stayed away from the adultery but I would recommend.
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