The Taken Ones (Steinbeck and Reed #1), a review by Shelley

posted in: Shelley | 0

Jess Lourey

Thomas & Mercer
Publication Date: September 19th, 2023
331 Pages
Goodreads | Amazon

This was my first book by this author and it wasn’t what I was expecting, but not in a good way. I was really into it, clipping along at a fast pace and enjoying the read about a dead body that links back to a cold case from forty years ago. And then all of a sudden the lead cop gets “visions” and starts to have heart flutters over her partner. Why oh why couldn’t this just have been a really good police procedural/investigation plotline without the voodoo and the romance thrown in!? Lourey had a really good thing going here until she didn’t.

I was engaged enough to want to finish this one because I wanted to know who the killer was and had the author not thrown in the two things I mentioned and had avoided about a million sub-plots in the narrative I would have loved this book. There are plots about a senator abusing her husband and kids, another about Van’s backstory in an abusive cult, one about a case she worked on before with Steinbeck and another about the history she has with her old partner and his replacement and then we had swingers and dog rescues…I got a headache trying to figure out where the author was going with it all.

I did love how the author wrote the killer’s point of view, man is he ever damaged, his pages creeped me the feck out and his ability to hide was certainly a unique one. The book ended on a real cliffhanger and this is supposed to be a series but I was so disappointed in the way it went I won’t be bothering to pick up book two. I am in the minority here and at the time of posting this review the book has a 4.35 rating on Goodreads so take my review with a grain of salt.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the Advance Readers Copy.

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