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This book is getting rave reviews. I can't go along with the gusher. As a long time fan of the Bosch series, perhaps my expectations were too high, or there was too much comparison with that series.
Renee Ballard doesn't enthrall me. Sleeping on the beach with her rescue dog as a guardian just doesn't engage my emotions in a positive way. Speaking of Lola, Ballard is somewhat neglectful of the dog. I hate that she leaves the dog alone on the public beach while she's paddling. and that the dog sits outside her tent all night, again on a public beach, again without protection. She leaves Lola with daycare too long too, and the pet minder tells her off about it. So that's strike one for Renee Ballard,
Her strength of character is written by a man from a man's perspective, and maybe that's why I'm having a hard time warming up to her. She's too hard, too eager/willing to bypass the police department she works for in a blatant manner, and without concern for herself or others. She doesn't even give a nod to it, as Bosch did. Her pursuit of a suspect is reckless; failure to pay attention to details, and to anticipate criminal behavior, results in her capture by a sociopath, who may or may not have raped her. I don't like the possible rape angle either. It's too stereotyped, obviously written by a man. Totally unnecessary to the story too.
Her failure to take basic precautions also results in a shootout, and one of the other cops who was involved complained about it. Justifiably so, because she put him and his partner in harm's way without much thought.
Her independence and strength of character sometimes comes across as merely abrasive. She hangs up on people regularly, butts in on conversations and interrogations when she shouldn't. Again, it's a strong woman written from a man's perspective, perhaps one who finds strong women abrasive.
The story is OK, a good plot twist at the end. Easy enough to follow. However, I didn't find it to be as absorbing as the reviewers obviously did.
Connelly's reliance on three-letter acronyms for various aspect of the LAPD was a bit much too. At times, I didn't know what they meant and so a portion of the storyline was lost to confusion.
Finally, the narrator doesn't do voices, so it's often hard to tell who is speaking.
Will I read the next book in the series? Probably. Some of the reviews say Connelly hasn't written good women characters in the past. I'm not sure he's succeeded with Renee Ballard. Time will tell this story.
39 of 40 people found this review helpful
Katherine Moennig is a terrific actress. She does a great turn on Ray Donovan. Maybe my favorite character on that show. But this narration isn't good. It's disappointing. She just reads it and reads it fast. I wish she had listened to a few audiobooks ahead of time to see how its done. Such a good voice, such a good actress, this should be better.
As far as the story goes, it's hard to tell. Couldn't get past the narration.
231 of 246 people found this review helpful