Review: The Dead Girl by Debra Webb

the dead girlTitle: The Dead Girl

Author: Debra Webb

Year of publication: Out today! The author kindly gave me a copy to read and review

The blurb: Former L.A. homicide detective Laney Holt walked away from big city crime after a shooting she couldn’t put behind her. With L.A. in her rear view mirror, she accepted the position of deputy chief of police in a small picturesque paradise called Shutter Lake. Nestled in a peaceful valley surrounded by the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Shutter Lake is the perfect small town filled with pleasant, charming folks. The crime rate in Shutter Lake is zero…at least until the dead girl is found. The shocking murder shakes the town to it’s very foundation.

Laney’s past comes back to haunt her as she delves into the investigation of who murdered beautiful, young Sylvia Cole. But Laney’s secrets aren’t the only ones revealed as one by one the cracks in this perfect town start to show and the facade of perfection slowly begins to breakdown.

Standalone or series: This is the first book in a four book mini-series, each one written by a different author. You will need to read all four in order, as together they form one big book.

The review: This is not a romance book, but a thriller/suspense book. However, the author is also a romance writer, which is how I came to be reading it. The Dead Girl is the first in a four book mini-series, one of which will be released weekly, and this series is off to a crackingly good start with this book.

Shutter Lake Deputy Laney Holt is a former LAPD homicide detective who moved there two years previously, after an incident she can’t move past. She’s never needed to use her skills in homicide before, until one day Shutter Lake resident Sylvia Cole is found murdered in her home. Sylvia was twenty-six and well known to everyone in the community, having started her own cleaning company at the age of eighteen. It seems impossible that anyone would want her dead, but as Laney and Chief of Police Griff McCabe start to examine the evidence and dig into Sylvia’s life, they learn that she had secrets. And she was in the business of learning other people’s secrets. Is this what got her killed?

Sylvia was hiding a large sum of cash in her home safe. She was seeing a man for sex on a regular basis, a man who denies all knowledge of it. She was having an affair with someone else. A senior high schooler had a crush on her. She was possibly involved in helping someone out of a very dangerous situation. The author sets the scene well; there are so many possible suspects that it’s hard to know who the guilty party is. It looks like each book is written from the POV of one of the town’s well-known women, so I’m interested to read the next three and find out who the killer is and why Sylvia’s life was ended.

If you like mystery and suspense books, then you should give this series a read. My little romance heart? Well, let’s just say I wouldn’t be unhappy if Laney hooks up with Griff 😉