Friday, November 4, 2022

Revenge in 3 Parts by Valerie Brooks Book Review

About the Book:

Her sister is dead. The FBI, the mob, and a stalker all played a part. Now they'd better watch their backs...

Angeline Porter won't budge from her convictions. After getting disbarred for breaking the rules to put a criminal away, the former attorney still believes in doling out justice. So when her troubled sibling takes her own life, Angeline's quest for the truth turns into a frenzied hunt for vengeance.

Caught in a whirlpool of grief, her relentless chase for answers exposes an ugly chain of betrayal, sex, and extortion that puts her head-to-head with powerful mobsters. And with desperation forcing her down morally questionable paths, the driven woman's only way out may be to unleash her darkest side.

Can she deal out retribution before she loses her grip on reality?

Revenge in 3 Parts is the darkly dramatic first book in The Angeline Porter Trilogy of noir thrillers. If you like renegade heroines, psychological page-turners, and sexy undertones, then you'll love Valerie J. Brooks' wickedly wild ride.

My Review:

Brooks gives readers a flawed heroine bent on revenge. The novel is an exploration of the main character, Angeline. Her life changes incredibly when she finds her sister dead from suicide. She is determined to find out who was responsible for her sister's desperate act. Her initial actions precipitate a cascade of events, each one revealing a new truth. She heads ever deeper into a web of misinformation, deceit and lies.

I had difficulty initially liking Angela. She was a mixture of periodic strength with overarching weaknesses. She drank to excess. She was frequently disoriented in her being, numb to the world, distracted when talking with a person, slowed by indecision, fumbling her plans. As the novel progressed, Angela got off her meds and became more focused. I liked her a bit by the end. Much of the character development was through desperate thinking rather than heroic action.

Brook's writing style is quick and clipped. Sentences are short. It makes for a plot that keeps moving even though much of the text is Angela thinking about the future and the past and other possibilities. There are plenty of twists and turns and nearly unbelievable characters revelations. The novel is an interesting study of what can happen when a person takes the law into their own hands.

I think Angela is just getting in her stride. I trust there will be future novels featuring her and I look forward to seeing how she stabilizes into a flawed yet worthy heroine. 

My rating: 4/5 stars.

About the Author:

Valerie J. Brooks
is the recipient of an Elizabeth George Foundation grant and the Monticello Award for Fiction. Her residency fellowships include Villa Montalvo for the Arts, Hedgebrook, Soapstone, Vermont Studio Center and Playa. She's an unrepentant Francophile, good girl-bad girl, who loves to write about strong women with lots of baggage. Sometimes the baggage leads her characters to extreme acts-like murder. But always sizzling at the core is a motive of justice and fair play. The world isn't fair, of course, but everyone knows that, don't they? Her love of noir originated during a college film course where she discovered dark times often spawned a new generation of noir. She decided to combine her interests in politics, culture, travel, psychology and women's issues into writing noir novels.

Black Leather Jacket Press, 290 pages.

I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Partners in Crime Book Tours. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(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.)

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