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If Looks Could Kill Mass Market Paperback – September 1, 1992
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About the Author
Eileen Dreyer is a forensic specialist who spent 16 years as a trauma nurse before she turned to writing. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
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I'm still smiling after finishing this earlier today. A "true" mystery, couldn't put it down until I finished it. Seriously one of the best I've read and I've read a lot of them lately. While I've read some good ones for sure, this was, I believe, from the old school of fantastic mystery/suspense writing. The number of suspects kept growing, then changing, then growing some more. The suspects began showing other problems anyway so I kept thinking "now what!" Not a bunch of love stuff (while the impression was left that there was a budding affection growing) and that was a superb touch. Stuck to the plot and whole reason for the story in the first place. I was totally thrown at the end when it all began to unfold. WOW! Never saw that coming, at all!
I will recommend this to any and all that love good suspense stories. Not let downs here for sure.
Chris Jackson in an author. She lives, by choice, in a very small Missouri town, not far from St. Louis. The town helps keep her identity a secret and she helps the town, buying a business and supporting in other ways. When the new police chief catches her breaking in to a local business he has a hard time understanding she owns the business and she is doing research for her next book.
Both Chris and Al, the new chief, come with baggage, him from a divorce and being shot on the job. Chris comes from an abusive religious mother and horrid teen age years.
They are thrown together because someone is using plots from her books to murder people in St. Louis. Al isn't sure whether to suspect Chris, thinking her mental health is shaky, or work with her to find out what is really going on.
This is one of Dreyer's better books. I think of her as a female Harlen Coben, she keeps you thinking and guessing up to the final chapter. I like how this book ends too, with Chris and Al confronting her past so she can heal and move forward.
Pros: I liked this book and the underlying story about Chris Jackson. The characters were good and I think readers will relate to the hidden pains of Al and Chris especially. I liked the characters in the town of Pyrite and the descriptions of the town itself. I think I may have lived in Pyrite at one point in my life and not realized it! The supporting characters were very real. I loved Dinah and Trey and I, of course, loved to hate Sgt. Lawson and Reverend Sweetwater. I think my favorite character was Al MacNamara. After suffering a horrendous injury, Al decided to move to a smaller, quieter town, only to be put into the circus that is Chris Jackson's life. Solid as a rock, Al is calm and cool and carries everyone through the story to the exciting end.
Cons: Chris' different names are a little hard to keep track of. I can't be a spoiler, but for me, it was just a tad too much. There were a couple typos in the book, but nothing that hugely detracts from the story. I think the biggest Con for me was that I felt there was no true resolution at the end of the book, and I'm a girl who loves a happy and complete ending. Another thing that is very small, but really sticks with me is that I don't connect the book's title with the events in the book.
Reader Warnings: This book does contain some sexual content, violence, child abuse, phobias and negative religious connotation.
In Conclusion: I enjoyed reading this book. If you like suspense and surprises, then this one's for you. I recommend this one