Book Rating (out of 5):
This was an unexpectedly fun time.
Why unexpected? you ask. Because I randomly picked up this book at the Dollar Store.
Bargain hunter that I am, I always end up in the Dollar store at least a couple of times a month and I always spend more time that I should digging through the books there. Even when I tell myself, “DON’T BUY ANYMORE BOOKS!” I always end up walking out with a book.
That being said, I rarely end up reading the books that I pick up at the Dollar Store. I don’t even know why I buy them. Well, that’s not true. It’s because they’re $1 and it seems like such a good deal at the time. The money wasting asshole strikes again! But not this time! Hahaha! Because this time, I got my dollar’s worth and then some.
The Stranger You Know by Jane Casey is #4 in the Maeve Kerrigan series. Before I picked this up, I wasn’t familiar with the series, but now I’m going to have to go back and pick up some of the other books because I liked this one so much. Good thing is that you don’t need to have read the others to enjoy this one.
The Stranger You Know is a little whodunnit that follows Detective Constable Kerrigan as she gets dragged into an investigation of a possible serial killer. As it turns out, her superiors think that her partner/supervisor, DCI Josh Derwent might be involved. Now, this is the only implausible part to me because if you thought one of your detectives was capable of murder, why in the world would you have ever hired him as a detective???? But I felt that Casey did an excellent job of explaining that away, and I was satisfied enough to continue.
From the beginning, Derwent is very unlikable and you aren’t sure whether or not he could actually be capable of murder. He’s gruff and sexist and obnoxious, and he obviously intimidates his partner. Based on his abrasive personality alone, you think that he very well could have done it. But as the investigation widens, Kerrigan finally discovers why he’s under suspicion and you begin to understand that there is a whole bevy of characters who also could have done it. I had my guesses, some of them which proved to be right and some of them wrong. It was predictable-ish (I mean, I saw several plot twists coming from a mile away), but still kept you guessing as to who the ultimate big bad was going to be.
What I liked most about the story was Maeve. She made some dumb choices (ok, a lot of dumb choices) where her career was concerned, but she seemed unflaggingly forthright and real. Despite the fact that she’s getting pressure from her superiors, she wasn’t afraid to admit that she was intimidated by everyone, but she also didn’t let that stop her from discovering the truth. She wanted to hear and see all the evidence before she made up her own mind. You saw her mind at work and you realized that she has really great instincts, she’s just not so great at communicating and she doesn’t always do the most logical thing (at least not for her career.)
Anywho, I probably rated this higher because it was such an unexpectedly good time. You know when something catches you off-guard and you probably rated it higher than if you had the expectation coming in that it was going to be decent????
Regardless, if you are in the mood for a well-paced murder mystery, I think this one is worth checking out.