Series: Pike, Wisconsin, #4, #4, #4
Published by Zebra on 21st February 2023
Buy on Amazon
WILL SHE FIND THE ANSWER
Teenager Lia Porter shouldn't have been anywhere near the railroad bridge that night. Sneaking home after a party in the fields outside Pike, Wisconsin, she glimpsed a woman in a leather jacket, running in terror. Lia puts the incident from her mind--until a body is found near the same spot fifteen years later, wearing the same jacket. The police rule it a suicide. Lia knows different. The woman she saw was trying to save her own life, not end it. But whatever she was fleeing from found her first . . .
BEFORE THE KILLER
The stranger who arrives at Lia's store shares her suspicions. Hollywood stunt driver Kaden Vaughn has come home to Wisconsin to learn the truth about what happened to his brother's fianc�e years ago. The leather jacket, the timing--he believes the dead woman is Vanna, and that Lia may be the only person who can help. Together they retrace Vanna's steps, but the more they dig, the darker the secrets become.
The killer is still out there, stalking the streets of Pike again, willing to do whatever is necessary to keep the truth locked in mystery. One by one, all those who know something about that night must be silenced, until there is no one left to tell . . .
Something’s rotten in the town of Pike, at least according to Alexandra Ivy’s small-town series, where decades-old murder mysteries abound and townsfolk get cagey about it.
In ‘Desperate Acts’, Lia Porter unwittingly tangles with several figures of authority after revealing her involvement in a potential murder case when she was the last to have seen the victim alive and gets caught up with an unlikely visitor seeking some answers of his own. Both Lia and Karen Vaughn play at detectives; it’s a sort of amateur sleuthing that can only go so far—both of them acknowledge it as well—but what do you do then, when the straight-laced, honest ones are sorely lacking and everything else is hindered by some guilty party?
I thought the case was quite interesting when viewed ‘objectively’ in a sense up until a (somewhat cheesy and overused) point where the perpetrator spent the last bit of the book self-righteously boasting—perhaps also quite one-dimensionally—about their cleverness and deeds when things finally came to a head. Yet both victim and perpetrator were portrayed as unlikeable and rotten and I’d actually started to think that Lia/Kaden were simply better off letting Pike stew in its own messy soup of murder mysteries.
I also wasn’t too convinced that Kaden was suddenly all into the new relationship with Lia beyond the pulsing attraction between them after just a few meetings; that it had turned so quickly to love and utter devotion by midway through had me baffled and incredulous when I thought that should have been something deeper maybe that would have tied them together.
Still, this was an easy read, delivering the body-dropping numbers with a bit of B-movie type clichés and thrills and will easily provide an entertaining night in.