Author: Annie Solomon
Read copy: eBook
Published: May 1, 2009
COMING HOME IS MURDER...
Revenge. Edie Swann has hungered for it since she fled her hometown as a little girl. Now she's returned, ready for payback. Armed with a list of names, she leaves each one a chilling sign that they have blood on their hands. Her father's blood. What happens next turns her own blood cold: one by one, the men she's targeted start dying.
Sheriff Holt Drennen knows Edie is hiding something. She has a haunted look in her eyes and a defiant spirit, yet he can't believe she's a murderer. As the body count rises and all evidence points to Edie, Holt is torn between the town he's sworn to protect and the woman he's come to desire. But nothing is what it seems. Long buried secrets begin to surface, and a killer won't be satisfied until the sins of the past are paid in full--this time with Edie's blood.
I started this book with high hopes. The premise was great – a woman returns to her hometown after twenty years, determined to learn the truth about why her father committed suicide all those years ago and avenge his memory. Armed with a list of names, she sends all the people on that list (that are still alive) a figurine of a black angel – one similar to the black angel guarding over her father’s grave.
But something goes wrong and the people receiving the dark tokens end up dead. And the only connection between them – as far as everybody knows – are the black angels. The truth about the woman comes out, she’s accused of murder, but someone isn’t satisfied with that sentence. Someone want the death penalty for Edie.
As I said, the premise was great, yet the book didn’t convince me fully. I loved the narrative style – the short, staccato sentences a complete opposite from the epic word-flow in other novels.
I loved tough-as-nails, tattooed biker-chick Edie. I loved how the author didn’t leave it at that, showing the other side of the coin as well. Despite her bravado and strength, Edie was still as very vulnerable woman, an the toughness mostly just the mask.
The stereotypical portrayal of the small town in the middle of nowhere with its mob mentality could’ve been toned down a notch, but it wasn’t the biggest problem this book had.
Actually, for me, there were two problems.
The first was the male lead. Police chief Holt Drennen. At first he was a dream come true. Big, blond (not your usual hero), with a protective streak a mile wide, honorable, strong, yadda yadda yadda. The fact he just couldn’t resist the dark-haired new chick in town was just that special cherry on top of the cake.
Unfortunately, the idyllic attitude didn’t last. Somewhere in the middle of the story, this dude took a turn for the worst. I know, we all have our flaws, but his ping-pong attitude toward Edie simply grated on my nerves. First he loved her, than he though she was a murderess and he hated her for loving her, then he suddenly decided he actually believes her story and he was back in love with her…Until a few pages later, when he discovered another lie (she actually lied to protect him) and he went off again. And they say females are fickle!
The second big problem, and the worst in my book, was the ending. With the whole buildup and the possible villains sprouting up from everywhere (I decided to ignore the most obvious one and ended up being right!), the grand finale fell flat onto its face. It was completely out there and utterly ruined an otherwise (hero notwithstanding) good story.