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Dying Embers Paperback – February 14, 2015
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About the Author
Minor conspiracy theorist and major hermit, armchair Jeopardy!champion and fount of useless knowledge, pessimistic optimist andhopeful romantic, B.E. Sanderson spends her time reading, writing,gardening, and generally enjoying life with her husband and their cat.
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Top customer reviews
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Jace Douglas is a top notch agent at the S.C.I.U. and is determined to bring this killer to justice. Even the best agents can't do it alone. Enter Ben Yancy. Local cop determined to help bring this killer to justice.
This was a great read. It gripped me from the beginning and didn't let go. Emma Sweet is a lunatic of the first order, but I really enjoyed getting to see things from both sides. Knowing who the killer is right from the start was a change, but it was fascinating to watch this story unfold.
Jace Douglas is far from perfect and has a ton of baggage that could potentially take her down with this case. She has real life issues that are easy to relate to but she's wicked smart and determined. I liked Ben Yancey, he was the Yin to her Yang. Nice twist at the end as well. I'm hoping that this is only the first book in a series. (hint hint) I will definitely be reading B.E. Sanderson in the future.
As the synopsis says, an FBI agent, Jace, her new unofficial partner, Ben, and her team are searching for a serial killer who glues the victims in their cars and sets them on fire. Readers are privy to the thoughts and viewpoints of both Jace and the killer, which adds to the interest of the story. Readers know from the start who the killer is--sort of like in a Columbo mystery--and the tension and interest comes from the alternating viewpoints and actions of both the protagonists and antagonist.
Readers see the killer's mind slowly unraveling into a psychotic break from reality and are taken along on the resulting cross-country killing spree. As well, readers parallel the killer's movements with those of the investigators, as they search for leads and motives in an effort to prevent further murders. The focus, then, for the reader is not on "who dunnit", but on the characterizations and the entertaining journey from beginning to end. The journey itself is fairly well plotted, but it does require some suspension of disbelief. I expect to need it in a work of fiction, however, and there were no egregious, eye-rolling plot holes, although some of the breakthroughs were a bit easy.
There were no problems with writing mechanics in this book and it was well edited.
Except for the killer and some sleazy secondary characters, the characters were likeable. Ben seemed nice from the start while Jace seemed stiff and closed-off initially, but her character grew and became warmer and more approachable as she spent more time with Ben. The team at the home office had enough page time to introduce them and to learn a bit about them. They were well placed to become more central characters if this book becomes part of a series.
The book was relatively fast paced and kept me engaged. There were discussions about the killings and crime scenes, but nothing very graphic or extremely violent "on-screen". This is definitely not a graphic thriller but it is a lighter work of suspense. There were a few non-graphic, "off-screen" sex scenes where the reader is told that a character had sex, but was not shown it. I don't remember any profanity, certainly not any of the hot-button ones like the "f" bomb that some readers dislike.
Jace and Ben seemed quite attracted to each other and there is the implication that a romance is in the offing, but I wouldn't characterize this book as a romance. The conclusion left the possibility of a romantic relationship open, though, as well as the possibility of a series with them working as partners in the FBI.
I highly recommend this book to anyone wanting a pleasant, quick and easy read that is engaging and entertaining. I picked it up expecting to put it in a delete pile after a few chapters, and instead, I read it in one sitting. Would I read it again? Possibly. I definitely will not delete it. Would I read more books by this author and more books with these protagonists? Absolutely.
I debated whether to give this book four or five stars and opted for five because I think the author achieved the objective of entertaining the reader within the parameters of the light suspense genre. I would have liked more romance with the suspense, but that's not what the book is, so I am judging it on what it is rather than on what I prefer. If I choose a book that is not a romance, then I guess I can't complain because it isn't a romance. Well, I could, but it wouldn't be very logical or fair.