Monday, April 19, 2010

One Scream Away - Kate Brady

Killer Chevy Bankes is a master of disguise, and just paroled, he's coming after the woman who sent him to jail, the beautiful antiques expert Beth Denison. A set of antique dolls brings Beth into his sight, and inspire Chevy's disturbing crimes as he draws closer to Beth and her young daughter. Chevy sends the dolls to Beth one-by-one and she soon realizes that these antiques carry the same marks as his victims, signaling that the final piece in his collection will be for her.

Neil Sheridan gave up his FBI shield five years ago, but his best friend Rick, a cop, pulls him in as a consultant on a case involving a serial killer who is eerily similar to a murderer Neil encountered in the past. The investigation leads Neil to Beth's doorstep, and he is certain she isn't telling him the truth. Neil is the only one who can get through Beth's defenses and, as they grow closer, discover the secrets that Beth is hiding about her fateful night with Chevy.

I got this book after reading Rosario's review, Kate Brady is a fairly new author (her second book will be published this year) and I'm always looking for good romantic suspense authors so I decided to give it a go.
Neil Sheridan used to be a cop, seven years ago he worked on a serial case, he got a conviction but being overworked cost his family and he has left the force and been on a self destruction path ever since. Now his good friend Rick asks for his help because there's a new killer on the loose and the modus operandi is similar to the guy Neil helped convict in the past. Could they have gotten the wrong man?
The new killer is using the victim's cell phones to contact Beth which, at first, makes her a suspect and that's why she and Neil meet. But the police soon realise that Beth is a victim too, in fact she may be his next victim but there is something she is hiding about her past and how well she knows the killer.
I did like both Beth and Neil very much. They are resilient people who have had to move on with their lives and they did so in a very real and believable way. They are practical and don't spend their lives thinking of what happened. I liked that. Unfortunately I wasn't totally convinced by their attraction to one another. I thought it came about too fast and while I did like their interaction once they were an item I would have preferred a slower approach, especially on Nick's side.
I have a few doubts about how the police led the investigation at first. We already knew who the killer was, how he was working and partially why and although I see that while Beth was a suspect they couldn't tell her everything but it felt that they would have reached the truth sooner had they told her upfront what Banks was doing. Not only that but it never felt like Neil and Beth were a team trying to catch the murderer, Neil kept trying to protect Beth and Beth planning to confront Banks and I think it would have worked better if they were a team.
Having said that, I really liked how Brady kept us in suspense about what was going to happen next. Despite knowing the killer we are kept guessing whether he manages to do what he wants or whether the police will be able to catch him in time. She kept me reading till the early hours to find out how the end would come about and even managed to surprise a time or two with some characters fates. A very positive first book that made me curious for the next one.
Grade 4/5


  1. We seem to agree, a very promising first book! Looks like the next one is out in the next few months, but I'm not sure when. It says July on Brady's website, but September on Amazon. Weird!

  2. Yep! :-)

    I wonder which is correct, weird indeed.


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