Friday, October 21, 2016

58. Empty Houses - Betsy Thornton

(looks like the first in a new series)
read the actual hard cover book that I got from the library!
2015 Severn House Publishers
224 pgs.
Adult murder mystery
Finished 10-21-16 (read in two days)
Goodreads rating:  3.47 - 19 ratings
My rating: 5/ for reasons, see "my comments"
Setting: Contemporary Bisbee, Arizona (called Dudley, but all other places names are correct)

First Line/s:  "The place was a beach town near LA; the event was lunch at La Casita, a Mexican restaurant Harry and Kate went to from time to time."

My comments:  I spent a day just last week in Bisbee, Arizona after reading one of Margaret Falk/J. Carson Black's mysteries that is set there. I've been down there quite a few times.  I wandered the streets and some of the staircases on foot, and drove in and around and all over the place.  So when I started reading this mystery (I've read all the Chloe Newcomb ones), I was RIGHT THERE.  Bisbee (which for some reason Ms. Thornton calls Dudley) is one of the protagonists  in this novel.  There are lots of characters and they were really easy to keep track of.  I like Kate.  She's flawed in lots of little ways, and seems so real.  I really like Malcolm, and I hope that he doesn't get dropped from the next in the series.  He's not so flawed, he's pretty darned cool.....  The mystery was well plotted and kept me guessing. The only thing I didn't like quite so much was the hopping back and forth from coast to coast as easily as they did.  It's not that easy, believe me!  The trips to Tucson and Phoenix were great, I was able to be right there with them.  First book in a bit that I couldn't (or didn't want to) put down.  I'm giving it a five (probably should be a 4 or 4.5) because I want its average to go up higher!  Looking forward to #2!

Goodreads synopsis:  The first in the brand-new Kate Waters series"
          Dudley, Arizona is an isolated desert town attracting people who need to escape. Kate Waters flees there following an abusive relationship. Phoenix cop Malcolm MacGregor comes to recover from the death of his wife. No one knows why Carrie and Wes Cooper arrived. But when they are shot dead, the town authorities first instinct is to protect the lucrative tourist trade and make a quick arrest without asking too many questions. 
          Having once spoken to Carrie briefly, Kate becomes increasingly convinced that the wrong man has been arrested for the crime. Was the shooting random, or is there something in the victims history back east that would explain it? Teaming up with Malcolm MacGregor, Kate is about to uncover disturbing links between her own and Carrie s past. Is Kate herself at risk?

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