- Caitlyn Lynch
Book Review: Her Last Word by Mary Burton
This is a whodunit murder mystery where cases from the present and past collide and the police detectives on the case must solve both to prevent more deaths.
Fourteen years ago, four girls went out to party. Gina never came home again and her cousin Kaitlin, who witnessed her abduction, is digging into the case again, determined to bring Gina home. Now Jennifer is dead too, symbols left at the murder scene linking back to the cold case. When Erika goes missing and Position is attacked, Detective John Adler knows he is running out of time.
Told in episodic form, with transcripts from interviews interspersed with narrative chapters, there weren't too many surprises here. I figured out the culprit for the present-day murders very quickly. I also thought the killer should have been introduced earlier in the story, which would have been easy enough to do considering Kaitlin’s research.
The PoV switched between Kaitlin and Adler, which I found frustrating because sometimes I wasn’t sure whose ‘head’ I was in. I think it would have been better to keep all the narration in Adler’s PoV and all the interviews from Kaitlin’s file, which would have meant we had to discover Kaitlin’s secrets along with Adler rather than having them ‘told’ to us.
There is also an open-door sex scene between Adler and Kaitlin, which I know will turn some readers in the murder mystery genre right off it. It was only three pages and frankly, completely unnecessary. A closed-door scene would have served just as well and not alienated readers who don’t enjoy that sort of thing.
While I enjoyed the read, and the writing is very good, when you finish a book and start thinking about all the ways it could have been better, it’s definitely not going to get top marks. I really don’t think I can give it any more than three stars.
Her Last Word is available now.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review through NetGalley.