Wednesday, 29 April 2015

The Bullet

Author: Mary Louise Kelly
Genre: Suspense
Type: Hardcover
Pages: 368
Source: Local Public Library
Publisher: Gallery Books
First Published: March 17, 2015
First Line: "My name is Caroline Cashion and I'm the unlikely heroine of this story."

Book Description from GoodReadsCaroline Cashion, a professor of French literature at Georgetown University, is stunned when an MRI reveals that she has a bullet lodged near the base of her skull. It makes no sense: she has never been shot. She has no entry wound. No scar. When she confronts her parents, they initially profess bewilderment. Then, over the course of one awful evening, she learns the truth: she was adopted when she was three years old, after her real parents were murdered in cold blood. Caroline had been there the night of the attack, and she was hit by a single gunshot to the neck. Buried too deep among vital nerves and blood vessels, the surgeons had left it, and stitched up the traumatized little girl with the bullet still inside. 

That was thirty-four years ago.

Now, Caroline returns to her hometown to learn whatever she can about who her parents were and why they died. Along the way she meets a cop who worked the case, who reveals that even after all these years, the police do not have enough evidence to nail their suspect. The killer is still at large. Caroline is in danger: the bullet in her neck could identify the murderer, and he'll do anything to keep it out of the police hands. Now Caroline will have to decide: run for her life, or stay and fight?

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to NetGalley and Gallery Books for providing me with a complimentary e-book copy in exchange for my honest review.

My Review:  The wonderfully intriguing premise is what got me to request this book immediately.  A woman not only finds out that she was adopted but learns that she has had a bullet in her neck since the age of three and doesn't remember ever getting shot nor does she have a scar?  Tell me more.

This novel is by Mary Louise Kelly, a former journalist, and while the premise was great I think that the execution needed a little work.  What I loved were the short chapters and the suspense of who the murderer was kept me reading for the first half of the book.  There's one action scene that I finished and I'm pretty sure I didn't have any fingernails left but overall I think the book lacked the tension I was expecting for a suspense read.

Caroline was an okay main character.  Her predicament put her in an unusual situation but overall I can't say that she's a character that will stay with me.  She's a smart woman, a university professor no less, but after learning she's adopted and the reason why she was adopted she suddenly becomes very erratic and makes some potentially dangerous choices.  Knowing that the bullet could put the murderer away why would you tell your story repeatedly to a newspaper?  Why wouldn't you set your security alarm on your house if you think you're in danger?  It just didn't sit well with me and made Caroline come off as silly.

I'm also not a fan of suspense reads who slip in a romance 'just cuz' and that's what Caroline's romance felt like.  It happened too suddenly for me could have been left out all together without hindering the main story line.

Overall, this was a decent read.  There were some good moments and some twists that I didn't see coming.  I enjoyed the beginning of the book and the build-up but in the last half of the book my interest started to wane a bit and unfortunately I didn't find it nearly as compelling as I was hoping.  This was a decent suspense novel and I'm intrigued to see what her future books will be like.  I think this would be a good book for people who enjoy lighter suspense reads.

My Rating: 3/5 stars

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