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Tipping Point Kindle Edition
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These are an important part of the story, of course, but I am generally not interested in the romance genre. With the introduction of the burgeoning relationship between protagonist Anna and detective Seam, there's a bit of swooning going on. Bearing in mind that intriguing description, I pressed on.
Things changed for the better (though fairly abruptly) when I began to learn Anna’s terrible secret life. Without giving too much away, let’s just say Anna’s breaking bad, but her potter’s kiln is akin to Walter White’s body-sized plastic tubs. I certainly found the story more compelling as I recognised this was not romance, but femme fatale.
It’s about justice and revenge in the end for Anna, though we learn that this initially endearing character is plagued by traumatic events and genuine emotional and mental illness. Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of her activities is the way she (and the narrator) minimises the horror – understating her crimes as if she has a few mere foibles landing her just outside the parameters of normalcy.
'Tipping Point' is a novella and could have been developed into a longer novel as there is a concept and characters here worth exploring more in depth. However, as a short piece of fiction, MacLean does not over complicate things and stays focused on the events surrounding just a few main characters.
As MacLean’s first book, there are some teething moments in terms of technique and language, including some confusing commentary on events early on. However, 'Tipping Point' held my interest (once I accepted and persevered through the romantic elements) and I did find I could picture the main characters and even worried for Sean’s safety, so the writing was effective – at least in providing me with some much-needed escapism over a rainy weekend.
Antony Millen is a Canadian living and writing in New Zealand. He is the author of three novels: 'Redeeming Brother Murrihy', 'Te Kauhanga' and 'The Chain'