“When secrets have been buried a long time there are people that don’t want them dug up.”
First things first: I DIDN’T GUESS WHO DID IT!!!!!
I read tons of less-than-stellar mysteries/thrillers so not knowing the whodunit (almost immediately, most of the time) in a novel is a HUGE deal for me. I mean, I kinda guessed that someone had something to do with the bad s*&^ going down, but I was off the mark with specifics (and for once I wasn’t thinking “well myyyy way would have been a whole heck of a lot more exciting”).
Alright, now that that is out of my system, let’s backtrack to the synopsis. Thirty years ago a beautiful country singer, perhaps on the way to stardom, was beaten to death in her home. Months of investigation and interviews followed before the body was finally discovered (headless and handless) in a wooded area and Jeb Jones was accused of committing the crime. Jeb has spent his entire time in jail professing his innocence and with the help of Rachel Wainwright and The Innocence Project, DNA samples from the crime scene are being re-tested and might just set him free – much to the displeasure of Detective Deke Morgan, a second generation cop whose father worked the murder case. The closer Rachel and Deke get to finding out the truth about Jeb Jones, the more intense the situation grows with a new string of brutal murders. Are they related? Is it a copycat? What truth (if any) will finally be revealed about a decades old murder?
Obviously I can’t give away a whole lot of other details since that would defeat the whole point of it being a “mystery,” but I can tell you this one was above average compared to lots of others I have read. Like I said, I didn’t guess the whodunit until it was pretty much laid out before me on a silver platter and this one was filled with an abundance of good (and bad) characters. The writing was very conversational, so although the stats say it’s around 400 pages, it seemed to be more like 300. It could have received 4-Stars from me were it not for a couple of things. First, the cover and the title. What the heck do they have to do with any part of this story????? And second, the re-hashing of what led Rachel to become a lawyer/begin working with The Innocence Project began to grate. I didn’t need to read snippets of Rachel’s backstory again (and again and again) – I pretty much understood the first time.
END NOTE TO MY BRAIN: Now that I’m finished reading this book about blonde-haired female country singers, will you pleeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaase make “Before He Cheats” stop playing in an endless loop in my brain????? Pretty please?
ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Thank you, NetGalley!