My review of Strangers She Knows:
In the stunning conclusion to the Cape Charade series, brain-damaged Kellen must fight with betrayed serial killer Mara. This is one case where the Strangers She Knows are not better than the devil she doesn’t know.
Kellen, Max, and Rae are finally settling into family life. Then three things happen to breach their peaceful life. First, Kellen still doesn’t have full use of her dominant right hand. Second, ten-year-old Rae is hitting the turbulent teens three years early by acting petulant and throwing dramatic tantrums. Worst of all, Kellen’s nemesis, Mara, has escaped from prison and is looking for revenge.
To avoid Mara, the family travels a circular route to a family-owned island off the California coast. The island is remote with no connection to the mainland other than a helicopter. No cellphone towers. No Wi-Fi. No telephone. No harbor. No mail. The family must rely on themselves for entertainment…and, if necessary, protection.
I loved the beginning of this book. It has almost gothic or historical fiction feel with the old mansion filled with convoluted rooms and secret passages on a desolate island. Rae and Kellen find a diary of a young girl explaining her restricted life during World War II and how a controlling father was embarrassed by his Japanese wife and half-Japanese daughter. That portion of the book was easily a 4.5 star read.
But then we get thrown into a standard thriller with Kellen fighting Mara to save herself and her family. It seemed formulaic to me. Plus most of the thriller’s plot was in the previous book in the series. This book resolves the cliffhanger from that book. However, I didn’t read the former book so it left me rather flat and seemed like only about a 3.5 star read.
Combining the two plots into one book is innovative but I don’t think it worked very well here. But as long as you know the book will seem languorous initially and picks up the pace at the midpoint, I think you will enjoy the characters and plots within Strangers She Knows. 4 stars!
Thanks to HQN, Harlequin Books, Partners In Crime Book Tours, and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
Strangers She Knows
by Christina Dodd
September 17, 2019
on Tour September 17 – October 1, 2019
Perfect for fans of Nora Roberts, Sandra Brown, Linda Howard, and Jayne Ann Krentz, New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd returns with the chilling finale to the Cape Charade trilogy.
I have three deadly problems:
- I’ve seriously offended a maniacal killer.
- I just had a bullet removed from my brain.
- My new daughter is growing up too fast—and she’s in the line of fire.
Living on an obscure, technology-free island off California means safety from the murderer who hunts Kellen Adams and her new family…or does it? Family time becomes terror time, until Kellen finds herself alone and facing an all-too-familiar psychopath. Only one can survive, and Kellen knows who must win…and who must die.
Be sure to also check-out the rest of the Cape Charade series, starting with DEAD GIRL RUNNING and WHAT DOESN’T KILL HER, available now wherever books are sold.
Series STARRED reviews from Booklist
“From the unforgettable heroine with a past to the incisively etched cast of secondary characters to the brilliantly imaginative plot, Dodd is at her most wildly entertaining, wickedly witty best.” -Booklist STARRED review on DEAD GIRL RUNNING
“Featuring an unforgettable protagonist…who makes Jack Reacher look like a slacker when it comes to dispatching trouble, and an ingenious plot that includes plenty of white-knuckle twists and turns as well as some touching moments of mother-daughter bonding.” -Booklist STARRED review on WHAT DOESN’T KILL HER
“Dodd continues her addictively readable Cape Charade series featuring Kellen Adams with another white-knuckle tale that simply begs to be inhaled in one sitting. With a fascinating island setting that includes a spooky old mansion, a secondary storyline involving World War II, and an antagonist who could give Villanelle from Killing Eve a pointer or two, this is Dodd at her brilliant best.” -Booklist STARRED review on STRANGERS SHE KNOWS
Book Details:Genre: Mystery/Suspense Published by: HQN Books Publication Date: September 17, 2019 Number of Pages: 352 ISBN: 1335468331 (ISBN13: 9781335468338) Series: Cape Charade #3 Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Read an excerpt:
New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd writes “edge-of-the-seat suspense” (Iris Johansen) with “brilliantly etched characters, polished writing, and unexpected flashes of sharp humor that are pure Dodd” (ALA Booklist). Her fifty-eight books have been called “scary, sexy, and smartly written” by Booklist and, much to her mother’s delight, Dodd was once a clue in the Los Angeles Times crossword puzzle.
Enter Christina’s worlds and join her mailing list at: christinadodd.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Twitter, Instagram, & Facebook!