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Customer Review

84 of 88 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok, but a little too much police procedural. I'd like more interesting personalities and more emotional pull., February 5, 2011
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This review is from: Fatal Affair (The Fatal Series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
FATAL AFFAIR by Marie Force.

Sam is a police detective. She is assigned the case of murdered Senator John O'Connor. Six years ago she and Nick had a one-night affair. He called her several times afterwards, but her roommate intercepted the calls and never gave her the messages. Sam later married and divorced Peter.

Nick is chief of staff for his best friend John (the senator). When John doesn't show up for work, Nick goes to John's home and discovers the body. He helps Sam throughout her investigation. He also shows her that he loves her and always has. She is reluctant to have a relationship with Nick until after the murder is solved.

A secondary minor story is about the Johnsons. Sam was involved in a crack shooting incident. The Johnson boy was shot and killed. Sam did nothing wrong but felt guilty. The mother threatened to kill Sam. Some attempts are made on Sam's life.

The story is primarily a police procedural. The reader is with Sam as she talks to many different people: cops, medical examiners, witnesses, suspects, the press, etc. We slowly uncover details and secrets about John's life. This was well thought out, no plot holes, no major problems. Sam is an excellent detective. She's strong, competent, and does some smart things while solving the case. Although there are attempts on Sam's life, I didn't feel fear or suspense (which I would have liked). It was more the feeling of old-time hard-boiled detective fiction. I did have one unanswered question. The killer cut off a body part before killing/stabbing John in the neck. Why would John lay in bed naked and be still while the killer cut off his part? There was no evidence of a struggle. How this was done becomes more of a mystery after learning who the killer was.

A secondary story is the wonderful relationship between Nick and Sam. He loves her and shows it in ways that would melt any woman (I think). That was the best part of the book. After one of the sex scenes my thoughts were: that's a really neat one, very sensual.

On balance, the police procedural was too dry for me. I would have liked some weird or interesting personalities thrown in. Everyone here was predictable, reasonable, normal. The only surprise or unexpected parts were "uncovering the facts" of John's life and the mystery of "who done it." I'm not sure what was missing for me to give it more stars - probably not enough emotional pull. It was an ok read.

Minor error: Patricia Donaldson was a character. The author called her Patricia Davidson at the 5246 count. It may have happened more than once.

Ebook story length: about 6 hours. Kindle count story length: 6081. Swearing language: strong, including religious swear words. Sexual language: mild. Number of sex scenes: 6, each one about 1 to 2 pages long. Setting: current day Washington D.C. and Virginia. Copyright: 2010. Genre: mystery with romance.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 20, 2013 12:18:26 PM PDT
Clorinda says:
Thanks for the "data" section at the end of your review. I wish more reviewers would include the facts in their reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2013 5:12:00 AM PDT
Jane says:
Glad you like. Thanks Clorinda.

Posted on May 24, 2013 3:30:35 PM PDT
Big John says:
Good review. I have the book and look forward to reading it.

In reply to an earlier post on May 26, 2013 8:55:37 AM PDT
Jane says:
Thanks Big John.

Posted on Aug 22, 2015 4:40:32 AM PDT
Peg C. says:
One of the other books in the series is on today's Daily Deal, so I wanted to check out book #1 and read a few reviews. I notice a male reviewer mentions "a little too much sex" and you mention that it's mostly a police procedural. I'm going to try it (starting with book 1) because it seems similar in some ways to J.D. Robb's "In Death" series, which I gobbled up for years, but different enough not to be a copy. I like the romance and cop procedural aspects both, I admit. The only thing likely to put me off is too much dwelling on politics (not a problem with Robb but with this series set in D.C., it definitely could be). I'm not averse to politics at all (I consider myself an expert) but I've seen it ruin way too many otherwise good novels and I tend to avoid like the plague.

Thanks for your review!
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Location: Chicago, IL, United States

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