What started out as a promising relationship with adventurer and tycoon Alec Zavos has fizzled into an uncertain future for antiquities expert Annalisse Drury. Returning to Walker Farm in Upstate New York to see her Aunt Kate should have been a welcome homecoming and distraction. Instead, she finds the childhood home she expected to inherit is for sale, without her permission. What’s worse, Kate’s ranch manager makes a gruesome discovery in the barn: the body of an unidentified man, dead by foul play.
Annalisse turns to Alec for help. She and her aunt shelter on his estate in the Catskills while the authorities canvass the scene. But when Kate herself disappears without a trace, Annalisse fears the worst: that one of the many secrets of her hometown has ensnared her family—a secret someone is willing to kill for to keep hidden.
I have mixed feeling about this novel. It's a decent mystery although the plot was very complex and bordered on being unbelievable. A missing person, how she went missing and where she was found, well, that was unbelievable. The going back and forth between the farm and Alec's compound was just too frequent. Annalisse seemed an inconsistent character in this novel. She was brave and resourceful sometimes and incompetent other times. The relationship between Annalisse and Alec was not consistent and seemed way too sexually intense some times, especially while Annalisse's aunt was missing.
I found Bell's writing style a bit difficult to appreciate. I think an additional edit is in order. An example is, “She nodded to Alec and left the room.” (Loc 1359/5551) The previous “she” in this scene referred to Annalisse. Granted, an orderly had entered the room but the gender was not specified. I assumed Annalisse was the “she” who had left the room. It was the orderly, however, as was indicated by subsequent text. Ah, trouble with antecedent pronouns.
Another issue with Bell's writing style is illustrated with, “She sprang against the cushion.” (Loc 1424/5551) She suddenly moved up, forward or outward, against the pillow? Sentences like that stopped the flow for me. And sometimes the dialogue just did not make sense to me, even reading it through a couple of times.
While this novel could stand on its own, the characters would be best understood by reading the first in the series, Stolen Obsession. You can read my review of that book here.
My rating: 3/5 stars.
Book Details:Genre: Mystery
Published by: Ewephoric Publishing
Publication Date: December 11th 2019
Number of Pages: 378
ISBN: 0999539426 (ISBN13: 9780999539422)
Series: Annalisse Series #2 || This is a Stand-Alone novel but the reader may gain more about the character’s past if they pick up the first book.
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Read an excerpt:
Her catalog venture, Ewephoric, began in 1985 out of her desire to locate personalized sheep stationery. She rarely found sheep products through catalogs and set out to design them herself. Order Ewephoric gifts online or request a catalog at TexasSheep.com.
Marlene and her husband, Gregg, reside in beautiful East Texas on a wooded ranch with their dreadfully spoiled horned Dorset sheep, a large Maremma guard dog named Tia, along with Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats that believe they rule the household—and do.
Catch Up With Marlene M. Bell:
MarleneMBell.com, Goodreads, BookBub, Twitter, & Facebook!
Tour Participants:Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!
Click here to view the Spent Identity by Marlene M. Bell Participants.
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours. My comments are an independent and honest review. The rest of the copy of this post was provided by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours.
(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)