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Publisher's Summary

In death, they are purified. Holding his victims under water, he washes away their sins as they struggle for their last breath. Then he stakes their bodies to the ground, exposing them for what they really are: witches, sent to tempt and to corrupt.
No one knows about defence attorney Charlotte Wellington's murdered sister, or about her childhood spent with the carnival that's just arrived in town. For Charlotte, what's past is past. But others don't agree. And as a madman's body count rises, she and Detective Daniel Rokov are drawn into a mission that's become terrifyingly personal.
©2012 Mary Burton (P)2012 Tantor
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Critic Reviews

"[A] well-paced thriller with a gloss of romance." ( Publishers Weekly)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Clennell on 11-11-12

Great Book

This is the first book I’ve ever read by Mary Burton, and I have to say I was awe-struck. This was a really good book. Usually, when I read books about carnivals, I don’t see the other side of things like I did in this book. You never think about how shady some people can be and how their lives are changed by all the traveling and hardship associated with the state fairs and carnivals. All you think about when you go to the fair are the rides, the good food, games, and the cotton candy. In this book, you learn a little bit more about the lifestyle and how people who are not a part of the carny life see them. I never thought to look down my nose at someone for being a carny; I just thought it was fun to go to the fair, ride the rides, eat the food, buy things, play the games just to loose, and try to con someone into giving me a stuffed animal that I could never hope to win. It’s fun and exciting as a kid, and as an adult, you take your kids, or your niece, in my case, and you find a moment of happiness in seeing them enjoy themselves. This book gives you a whole different view of the carnival life.

Okay, enough about that. The book was great. From the start I was enthralled, snapped up and pulled into the action, the character’s lives, their past, the case, and the investigation. Usually, when I read a good mystery, I get caught up in the mystery and who did it; this time, I was caught up in everything. The whole book was a kind of mystery. Secrets are revealed throughout the book, people’s lives are at stake, and you’re not really so much worried about who the killer is as much as you are about the characters and their lives. I was so caught up in Grace, the lead female’s life and all the secrets she kept that I nearly forgot to try to figure it all out. In the end, it didn’t even matter because I didn’t guess right anyway. Well, the killer was on my suspect list, but I kept saying, “No, it can’t be that person.” Then all is revealed and I’m going, “seriously, this is really happening.” There was a little mysticism thrown in there for even more mystery and thought provoking moments. I really enjoyed the book altogether, and I was a little disappointed when it ended because I wanted to keep knowing the characters, to keep learning about their lives and their pasts. This will be a book I’ll remember for a long time; I know I’ll more than likely read it again.

I liked the narration. I’ve never listened to anything that was read by Johanna Parker before. I liked her voice and how she read the book. She did read in a solemn tone for most of the book, but the book’s subject matter was a solemn issue. Murder and mayhem isn’t something to be upbeat about; however, I knew who the characters were as she read their dialogue, and she did a good job with male voices as well as female voices. She did a good job showing the characters’ personalities through intonation.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Mimmi on 06-20-12

If you like Karen Rose, this book is for you!!

Would you consider the audio edition of Before She Dies to be better than the print version?

Hmmm...I don't know, I love to read, just don't have as much time lately.
But it's excellent!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sooner...she's so strong and smart for an 18 yr old...she's had to grow up so fast.

Which character – as performed by Johanna Parker – was your favorite?

Daniel...even though it was a woman performing, she did an amazing job conveying his character, his thoughts and concerns. Sometimes a narrators voices will make me miss the emotion because they don't do men well. This was great!

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Yes! When Charlotte admits her past to Daniel, and she expects to him hate her, or at the very least be disgusted. And he's not ~ he feels for the child she once was.

Any additional comments?

Just that this is my first Mary Burton book, and I loved it ~ I'm looking forward to more!
I wish there were more in Audio...and the partners book should be coming out next. I'll be getting that one for sure!

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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