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Stalking Susan Mass Market Paperback – June 23, 2009

4 out of 5 stars 74 customer reviews
Book 1 of 6 in the Riley Spartz Series

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Dazzling…. Readers who enjoy Janet Evanovich will soon be stalking Julie Kramer.”
Chicago Tribune

“A rocking good story…. Chilling, twisty, and clever.”
—Kathy Reichs

“A snappily paced debut thriller.... Truly scary no matter what your name is.”
People

“Riley Spartz is a classic spunky investigator. She'll have readers cheering for her gutsy determination to stop the killings and boost her ratings.”
USA Today

Stalking Susan is a fantastic debut. Julie Kramer has crafted a thriller that will get your heart racing.”
—Vince Flynn

About the Author

Julie Kramer is a freelance television news producer for NBC’s Today show, Nightly News, and Dateline. Prior to that, she was a national award-winning investigative producer for WCCO-TV in Minneapolis. She lives near Minneapolis in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor; 1 Reprint edition (June 23, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307388514
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307388513
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,186,261 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I really enjoyed this couldn't put it down debut book. I liked the character development, feeding you more information about the main character, Riley Spartz bit by bit. It was also surprising the age picked by the author of her main character, 36. Not a young woman out of college, she has experience behind her and a few winkles. It makes the story line have more depth and believablity. The subplot made me laugh as I read it, it added to some of the craziness of the multiple story lines that the news media are working on at the same time. I liked the mixture of the comical line with the heavier murder scenes. It seemed so current, like I was reading about it in today's paper.
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Format: Hardcover
STALKING SUSAN is advertised as a thriller, but it's really more of an old-fashioned mystery told from the perspective of a 36-year old TV reporter, Riley Spartz. While this novel isn't as suspenseful as I would have liked, it is still enjoyable reading.

This novel's serial killer plot is a little on the pedestrian side. STALKING SUSAN deals with a series of "cold cases" that took place over a decade in the past, so there is very little tension or conflict during the first half of the story. This novel doesn't contain a lot of big twists or surprises, and the identity of the killer will be quite predictable to veteran mystery readers.

Still, author Julie Kramer's writing style is both witty and readable, and she provides a lot of interesting insights into the world of television news. Kramer is a freelance television producer herself, so all of descriptions of a TV newsroom have an air of authenticity to them.

All in all, STALKING SUSAN is a fun enough read, the type of book that fans of Janet Evanovich or Lisa Scottoline might enjoy. It's worth a try if you like mysteries with a comedic bent.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved this book. The main protagonist, Riley, has gone through hell. She lost her husband and has to find a way to work through her grief. The way she copes best is doing her job as an investigative reporter--and when she gets hold a story she doesn’t let go until it’s solved.

Riley is persistent and has a great sense of humor. The author made it easy to like her.

The pacing was spot on and kept the pages turning. I look forward to reading Missing Mark, the next in the series, soon.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Julie Kramer has created a winning character in her investigative journalist, Riley Spartz. Riley is smart, feisty, funny and therefore enjoyable to read about. She's so far from perfect that she doesn't fit the mold that a lot of "heroine types" from other novels do, wherein they are depicted as beautiful, accomplished, unrealistically pure of heart, etc. Riley is vulnerable, but she's also tough and isn't above doing what it takes to get her story. In the process, she ends up solving crimes. It's a fun read.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Having long grown bored with the Stephanie Plum series, I was told to check out Riley Spartz. The humor was there, the escapades are there without those stupid fumbling romantic parallelograms.

Riley Spartz, a television reporter in the Twin Cities, is handed two files from a retired Minneapolis homicide detective that show a connection between two dead women named Susan and the date of their deaths. With that pattern set, the deeper she digs, more bodies appear and the killer is leaving clues.

As the November 19th anniversary date looms, Riley must find this serial killer before he can claim his next target. All the while doing additional research work to placate the higher ups at the station with what appears to be a silly little story emanating from a veterinarian’s clinic.

As Riley is still reeling from the death of her husband, she is fighting for her job and her next 40-audience share. Reporting is a cutthroat business and with November also being a sweeps month, she must solve this crime before her news director cuts her out altogether.

During an on air interview, Riley plays one last card in hopes of drawing the killer out. Little did she know that she might be the next victim.

There are a few “could be’s” in the story. The reader bounces back and forth not wanting it to be one but at the same time admitting that it was a possibility. Without it being obvious all along, the conclusion makes perfect sense. If it were not for Riley’s suspect board, the answer would not have been so clear.

I really liked this book; Julie Kramer did not talk down to her readers, but slowly revealed just enough to keep each chapter interesting.
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Format: Hardcover
After 25 or so pages of self-conscious constricted writing, the author, Julie Kramer, eases into a confident smoothly flowing writing style. I especially liked her detailed descriptions of the politics and practicalities of TV news broadcasting. Nice plot, but if you're looking for mysteries wrapped in enigmas you won't find them here. The characters are a tad one-dimensional. Definitely better than three stars; not quite five stars.
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By Dete48 on January 7, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Even though I was able to figure out "who done it" before the end, it was a good suspense/mystery story. I have ordered another in the series, but have yet to read it. This one was good enough for me to want to read more.
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