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Saturday 30 June 2018

The Echo Killing by Christi Daugherty

Despite the fact that I guessed very early on whodunnit (it wasn’t hard to guess), I found this book compelling, notwithstanding the irritation of the author’s (and, I guess, her editor’s) ignorance of how to say, ‘I better *do something*' (The phrase has a verb, dear both; it’s: 'I had better *do something*'). At the back of my mind, I kept thinking, yep, this is going to get a good review from me. But then it all went to pot at the end. One fairly major thread was left hanging, along with one minor one. One of my pet hates. Our heroine, Harper McClain, has a lot more story in her, without doubt…and I do like characters with mileage: I can quite happily read half a dozen plus in a series. But: the stories must stand alone. I consider the ‘to be continued’ ending a tad arrogant of an author, who obviously assumes you will have enjoyed his/her book so much, you will undoubtedly pick up the sequel. That very attitude will probably make me jump off the wagon trail.

Harper is a difficult character to like. Finding the body of her viciously murdered mother when she was only twelve has, naturally, had a profound effect on her. She’s very guarded, insular almost and stubborn. But she has grit, determination, stamina and does her job as a crime reporter very well…even if she does blur the lines a little. However, when, fifteen years later, a twelve-year-old is walked out of the house after finding her brutally murdered mother, Harper is on a mission. This has to be the same killer. Her conviction of this threatens her entire future. And her discovery is almost sure to make her question everything she’s trusted.

Despite the aforementioned editorial faux pas, this really was very well written and riveting. Even realising at an early stage who the perpetrator was, I was totally committed and gripped to find out how it all panned out.

Will I read the next book? Probably…I think I’ll have forgotten my annoyance of the untidy ending by the time I get round to it.

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