Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Natural Reaction

Author: Terri Reid
Type: Kindle e-book

Genre: Supernatural / Mystery
Series: 6th book in the Mary O'Reilly paranormal mystery series
Series Order:  1) Loose Ends, 2) Good Tidings, 3) Never Forgotten, 4) Final Call, 5) Darkness Exposed

First Published: December 2011
First Line: "The bell pealed its final warning and two dozen high school students quickly rushed in from the grey locker-walled hallway into the Chemistry lab."

Synopsis:  This book follows closely on the heels of Mary and her group solving the mystery of Jeannine's murder.  After being put through a harrowing experience to solve the 8 year old murder Mary comes out of it emotionally and physically drained.  Even after returning safely home Mary continues to suffer the after effects of being held captive.  Besides the support of her family and friends Mary also gets back into her normal groove by solving a new mystery about the death of a local high school science teacher.
My Thoughts:  This is one of my favourite e-book series to date.  It's a mystery series mixed with supernatural and has a really great price too ($2.99/e-book).  Unfortunately, this 6th book focused more on the relationships between the characters than the mystery.  I can only imagine how hard it is to balance the momentum of relationships while keeping up the suspense in the current mystery. Sometimes I don't have an issue with relationships taking the front seat for a bit of the book but since I just don't feel the chemistry between Mary and her man this time it was distracting.  I think a lot of it stems from the cutsie banter between them.  It happened quite a lot in this book was too saccharine for my tastes - even bordering on corny.

Thankfully, some of my favourite characters (Fireman Mike and Ian) make appearances again.  Who doesn't like a wise cracking ghost and a guy with a Scottish brogue??  These two are, hands down, my favourite characters.   I'm hoping they come to the forefront in future books.
Unfortunately, Bradley is another story.  I find Bradley to be kind of a boring character.  Yes, he loves Mary and he's a good guy.  He's likeable but not exciting (especially for a cop!).  I was hoping for a love triangle between Mary, Bradley and Ian to spice things up but that hasn't happened so far.  Bradley just seems too boring.  I'd much rather see Mary start to have feelings for Ian and show the drama that would happen between them as well as Ian and his fiery fiancĂ© back in Scotland.
Finally, there's something that I found odd over the last couple of books.  Mary's special talent is her ability to see ghosts.  Over the past few books, more and more characters are able to see ghosts as well.  It kind of makes Mary's talent a little less special and less believable.

While I did easily predicted the cliff hanger at the end of the book I will admit that it was satisfying to be right. :)  Without giving anything away I am interested to see how Ms Reid uses this new information in future books.
Overall this is a decent read but not my favourite in the series.  I'd prefer more mystery and a little less cutsie banter.  Perhaps more of a time lag in between books would be good too.  It's hard to imagine so much drama happening to one group of people within only a few months time.

I still recommend this series (but read them in order).  I just hope there's an infusion of oomph in upcoming books to keep the momentum going.
My Rating: 3/5 stars


Diane P said...

This is also one of my favorite e-book series. I think with a series it is hard to have all of the elements all the time. I did like to have more information about the characters.
Bradley has come a long ways in changing his belief system. I think Mary likes him because he is solid and represents safety/home base to her.
I am looking forward to the next in the series.

Laurie@The Baking Bookworm said...

Yay, another Mary O'Reilly fan!! :)I know what you mean, Diane. Keeping the romance, relationships and mystery on a high standard is quite a task for any author. While this book wasn't my favourite in the series it definitely won't stop me from reading the next book(s) in the series. Ms Reid has a wonderful writing style and I'm hoping that there will be more of a balance between the mystery and the characters' lives. I like a good ghost mystery! :)

TheBookGirl said...

I don't usually read scary...slightly eerie is about as much as this scaredy-cat can tolerate, but I have to say that your description of these books has piqued my interest. I am going to see if I can "scare" up the first one (ugh, sorry for the bad pun but I couldn't resist).

Diane P said...

If you are an Amazon Prime member-you can read them free from their lending library.

Laurie@The Baking Bookworm said...

BookGirl -- while the first few books in the Mary O'Reilly series have a creepier tone to them they're not bad at all. I don't like to scare myself by reading scary books (or watching scary movies). Just not my idea of a relaxing time.

Diane -- I've heard of Amazon Prime but I'm not sure I'd get my money's worth. It's about $70 USD, right? Does it include ebooks for Kindle? I'll have to look into it more. Thanks. :)

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