Monday, 29 March 2010

Review: One Last Breath by Stephen Booth

One Last Breath
Genre: Psychological Suspense Mystery

How I read it: Kindle for PC

What attracted me to the book: This series of books has been on my list for awhile. I first came across the series in a book store in Saskatoon, SK, Canada and have been wishing for the books ever since. I finally bought my first book on Kindle. Finally.

What it worth the money? I didn't pay much for it on amazon, so I guess so. It's exactly what I've come to expect from my British mystery writers and haven't been disappointed with this one.

Who should read this book: If you're into books by Val McDermid or Ian Rankin, you may like this book

Summary (from amazon): British author Booth's fifth crime novel (after Blind to the Bones) is as dark and winding as the labyrinth of caves below its Derbyshire setting. In 1990, Det. Constable Ben Cooper's father arrests Mansell Quinn for the brutal murder of his lover. Thirteen years later, Quinn disappears upon his release from prison, his ex-wife is immediately slain, and another murder soon follows. Convinced they're facing a revenge spree, the police mount a manhunt, probing physical clues and the messy web of relationships that Quinn has not quite left behind. The deeper Cooper and his colleagues probe, the more convinced Cooper becomes that Quinn was innocent of the original crime, a belief that deepens his sense that as the son of the arresting officer, he's personally at risk. Though the pace and focus falter slightly toward the end, this is intelligent, suspenseful reading that should continue to build Booth's U.S. audience. A master of psychological suspense, Booth hauntingly evokes the ambiguities of place and the enduring complexity of human relationships.

My thoughts:This book scared me at times because of the many scenes in the cave. I'm terribly claustrophobic. Even now, just the thought of some of the scenes sends shivers down my spine. In the book, there is a very haunting story told - it's not true (or so I hope...) but, it will stay with me for months.

Now, about the main characters.s: Detective Constable Ben Cooper and Detective Sergeant Diane Fry. Though, I related more to Cooper than Fry, I wanted to love Fry. I wanted Cooper and Fry to fall in love, I wanted them to express that love but I closed the book not quite understanding Diane. That could be an annoying point for some but I think it has to be that way or the series might not go on.

The plot, I think, was the weakest point. I think the writer tried to focus on two cases in the book and both didn't seem to resolve well enough for me. We think we know what happened but you're left with doubts. The first chapter opened in such a thrilling manor, I guess I was expecting that momentum to last to the last page. Not saying that the story didn't have great moment - it did - but I wanted more from the end.

Did I figure out who the murderer was before the main character(s): Not sure I could say yes to this. Not quite sure when the main character found out if ever... oh dear, I've said too much.

Bottom Line: Though I love Val McDermid more, I think I will give this author another read. Visit the author's blog: here




Anonymous said...

Ann - Thanks for this review. It's interesting that you compare this one with McDermid, whom I admire greatly. It sounds as though this one isn't as strong (a good plot is important to me), but I'll probably give Booth a try.

Jaydee Morgan said...

Ah, these types of books always make my reading list. I may even give this one a shot just because you said you first saw it in my hometown.

Karen Jones Gowen said...

Sounds like something I'd rather watch on the BBC than read in a book. But, how do you like reading an entire book on the Kindle? Do you prefer it over a hard copy?

Ann Elle Altman said...

Margot, McDermid is one of my favorite authors. I write my mysteries in a similar fashion to both McDermid and Booth. Although, my novels are less psychological than McDermid's.

Jaydee, I saw the book while visiting my sister-in-law. I want to read his other books as well.

Karen, what do I think of the Kindle? I like reading on it. I read so much on the computer right now, it doesn't much bother me anymore. I would say I now read 50% of the novels I own on Kindle.


Unknown said...

Just clicked through from my blog, Speak Coffee to Me -- and I have to say that I love that you rate books with coffee cups instead of stars. You can't see, but I'm raising my mug to you right now. :)

Talli Roland said...

Thanks for the review, Ann. This probably isn't my kind of book generally - and scenes in a cave would definitely do my head in. But a great overview!

Nishant said...

these types of books always make my reading list.
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Ann Elle Altman said...

Eileen, thank you for that compliment.

Talli, yes. I may have been hesitant if I knew more about the book. Caves make me batty (no pun intended)

Nishant, glad that you found my review interesting.