In the Shadows Kindle Edition
|Length: 270 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top customer reviews
Lots of murders happen and we follow the detectives as they investigate. We also get into the life of the protagonist, a girl who knows all the victims and is scared she will be the next victim. She leads a very active life and knows a lot of people and moves in a lot of circles, the better to set up a long suspect list haha.
So the first part was basically showing us all this, showing the murders, setting things up and introducing us to the detectives in charge of the case and following their investigations. So this part was quite interesting.
The murder investigation also seemed quite interesting and promising. It was intriguing because they found no clues at all. No DNA, no fingerprints.
I'm not a real fan of murder mysteries or police procedurals and I have read too many books that bored me because they spent a lot of time describing the detectives in their homes taking showers and having dinner with wine and watching TV. This does NOT happen in this book, to my relief. The author doesn't delve deeply into the personal lives of the detectives, which was a HUGE relief to me because I prefer to read about the lives of ordinary people, not those of police personnel.
Twisty, well-thought-out plot where almost everyone that the heroine knows is suspect at some point, making it hard to guess who the killer is. This also confounds the police detectives as well. And makes you scared that at any moment the killer might attack the heroine, since she hangs out with a lot of people and no one knows which one of them is the killer.
There seemed to be a lull when the detectives reached a stalemate due to the lack of evidence, but it picked up near the end. At last there was a break in the case, and that is where it got interesting again and things started happening and jumping again. Won't tell any more in order not to give any spoilers haha.
It's a really good book. The best thing was the writing. Tara Lyons really writes well. When someones does the same thing twice in the same paragraph, she takes cares to describe this same action using 2 different verbs and to describe each time the action is done a different way. She shows us how characters feel by showing us what they do, not telling us what they are feeling.
Really good descriptions of places too, where she tries to vary her vocabulary and never use the same word twice. (Sorry, I just read a very boring book just before this one where the author only seemed to know 2 words and used these same 2 words over and over again.) Exciting dialogue, sounds like real people talking.
The plotline was good too. Lots of activities and things going on to keep it from getting boring. The one thing I hate more than anything is a boring book where nothing happens and the only thing people do is take showers and drink wine. I like it when characters in books eat and take showers and drink wine. Just, not the whole book being nothing but characters eating and taking showers and drinking wine.
The storyline is resolved in this book. But it ends on a cliffhanger suggesting a new and equally exciting story coming up. I hope that is the case. Can't wait for it to come out!
In the Shadows is told from three points of view - Grace's, DI Hamilton's, and the killer's. After the recent death of her grandfather, Grace is struggling to find happiness. The closest she comes is while she's at work, where she's the assistant director at a local stage theater. There, she has Eric, the man she has a crush on, but who is sleeping with one of the other castmates. There's also her slightly creepy boss, Michael, who clearly has feelings for her. All of these people eventually get tied up in the ongoing murder investigations, and Grace continues to have nightmares. Her mother suggests seeing a therapist who can eventually do hypnotherapy to help her uncover the reason for her nightmares.
Overall, I thought this book was just okay. I felt bad for Grace, especially when her best friend continued to blow her off when she needed someone to talk to and confide in, but I also wanted to knock some sense into her. There were many times where she got drunk alone and then wandered around at night, but if you're worried a serial killer might be after you, wouldn't you maybe NOT go out alone at night? Especially not when you're completely wasted? It didn't make sense. I also liked DI Hamilton, but I didn't like the rest of the characters. They seemed selfish, shady, or just downright creepy. That said, because I didn't like them, I wasn't invested in them. I didn't care if they lived or died.
I can't quite put my finger on it, but I also felt like something was missing from the book. There were a lot of things I accurately predicted (including the killer), but one I didn't, but when the twist happened, I didn't feel any sort of shock or excitement at finally finding out who the killer was. Mostly I felt glad it was finally coming to an end. The suspense should have been there - the book had all the right pieces (the plot, and a main character who was directly impacted, and thus worried about her own life) but for some reason it felt lacking to me. The more I think about it, I think a lot of what bothered me was the dialogue between the characters. It felt forced and not at all the way people would talk to each other in real life. They were constantly using each other's first names in every sentence, and it felt stilted. For example, I'll quote a few lines of back and forth dialogue for you (I'll leave out the non dialogue pieces that come in between)
"Maria, they scare me..."
"What is it, Grace? What are you thinking?"
"I think it all began after those young women were murdered. You see, Maria, I knew three of them."
Another example a few pages later...
"Yes, I do want to carry on, Maria..."
"That's brilliant progress, Grace..."
"Thank you Maria..."
Those lines were all within the same page. No one uses someone's name THAT often in regular dialogue, and it took me out of the story when it happened (which was often).
So that said, the book was okay. I liked the plot, but didn't like the execution. This was Tara Lyon's first book published on her own, so it's possible that her writing style will develop and change over time. I'd consider reading something of hers again in the future.
In life, human beings are three dimensional ; in this novel, the main characters were not. The lack of depth to these characters meant they were uninteresting and this, unfortunately, also
applied to the main protagonist. I wanted to be believing, wondering, questioning, what would come next, what might be revealed? I waited for all of this - it never came!
What a real shame all of this is because here was the making of a real good story, one which should have been gripping and full of suspense and a real shocker!!!
It is a well thought out novel with plenty of detail that keeps you guessing from beginning to end. It starts off at a slow pace that soon gathers momentum as the pages click over. I thought I'd finally cracked the case in the last chapter but goodness me what a complete turn around, I was certainly left shell shocked at the end.
I hope there will be other Hamilton and Clarke follow ups in the not too distant future because these kind of books you just don't want to put down !!!
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Her debut book "In The Shadows" came highly recommended to me by many and...Read more
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