It was only a few weeks ago that Aphra Connolly’s life changed completely. She had been living a quiet existence on her father’s secluded island resort, until Seth Mulo turned up and stole her heart . . . and provided information that led her to find her mom in Seattle. But the reunion isn’t quite what she expected. Aphra’s mom, Natalie, doesn’t seem happy to see Aphra, and Natalie’s boyfriend, Joe, insists that Aphra go home. Even worse, Seth shows up, only to ask her to return the ring he gave her the previous summer. At least Natalie’s hunky neighbor is sympathetic. But when Joe is found dead at a nearby coffee shop, Aphra discovers her whole trip to Seattle has been based on a lie. And now someone just might be trying to kill her. . . .
Thank you to JL for this book!
In stores September 18th, 2008.
Memorable ARC Tidbits:
You know how some books have those Also Check Out pages for other books by the same publisher? Well, this one had one. And they had When It Happens by Susane Colasanti on there, except they spelt it Susanne Colasanti. Nominal typo!
Oh and I personally like this ARC better than the one of Death by Bikini. It's smaller, glossier, and cuter. Hehe.
(Please note that I'm not particularly proud of this review - I rewrote it a ton of times and it still sounds off to me. So yeah, I acknowledge its suckitude. Click here to read Presenting Lenore's review, which is infinitely more coherent.)
Ah, zeroing in once again on the Death By series. The first installment, Death By Bikini [review], didn’t impress me in any way, be it positive or negative. My mixed feelings were because, while the story was cute and competently written, the events were all crammed together making the pace in which I moved through the story feel fit for a race designed to render me breathless—and not in a good way. I mean, there’s tight writing and then there’s size-2-spandex-to-your-size-6-body writing.
Anyway, what can be deduced from that paragraph is that Death By Bikini earned neither frowns nor smiles from me. But now, moving on to this book.
I liked it. Great improvement.
There was a defined pause here that allowed for character growth, something I missed in the first novel. Characters, in my opinion, make any book: their feelings, dreams, hopes, etc. are what shape plots and create motivators. So I ask you, how does a mysterious affair form (in order for a novel to be categorized as a mystery) if there aren’t substantial characters? I get that these are supposed to be a light books, but still. Like I said, there was allowed room for character growth and I felt like Aphra was more rounded, as were the backup characters. Probably cos the setup’s already there from the first novel.
Some details of the mystery were a bit iffy for me because they were either based on stretches or coincidences. But looking at the overall picture, it was another great improvement. The buildup was quite good and the mystery itself, when you got up to it, was adorably knotting. (Yes, such a thing is possible. You know, beachy-baffling?) And while like I said before some details were sketchy, others were immaculate and clever; Ms Gerber clearly saw all the opportune moments in which to include clues and twists in.
But still, my favoritest (dumb neologism *grin*) part was the fact the pacing was just right—not too fast, not too slow.
If you’re looking for a light read, knock yourself out. You can read this without reading the first and not miss much, so...yeah. Have fun, kids.