Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Book of Shadows by Alexandra Sokoloff:

The Particulars:  Horror, St Martin's, available as e-book and in print
The Source: Purchased at Kobo
The grade: B-
The Blurb:
Homicide detective Adam Garrett is already a rising star in the Boston police department when he and his cynical partner, Carl Landauer, catch a horrifying case that could make their careers: the ritualistic murder of a wealthy college girl that appears to have Satanic elements. 

The partners make a quick arrest when all evidence points to another student, a troubled musician in a Goth band who was either dating or stalking the murdered girl. But Garrett’s case is turned upside down when beautiful, mysterious Tanith Cabarrus, a practicing witch from nearby Salem, walks into the homicide bureau and insists that the real perpetrator is still at large. Tanith claims to have had psychic visions that the killer has ritually sacrificed other teenagers in his attempts to summon a powerful, ancient demon.

All Garrett's beliefs about the nature of reality will be tested as he is forced to team up with a woman he is fiercely attracted to but cannot trust, in a race to uncover a psychotic killer before he strikes again.

The Review:

I bought this a month ago, spurred by the fact that Alexandra Sokoloff blogged about her self-published UK version.   I bought it from Booksonboard, though. Or was it Kobo?  Anyway.  I started reading it, and I was hooked.   The book has everything I want in a good novel.  A gruesome murder, a healthy dose of suspense and interesting plot. I loved Garrett for the fact that he is ambitious, and he doesn't hide it.   He is dating a DA  with connection, he relish tough cases. ( And this is definitely one).  I like that his partner is so different.   In many ways his partner is a cliche.  Old, chain smoking male detective.  He is a good contrast to Garrett, though. And Tanith.  Yepp, she is a witch.  But she is a strong character, without being bitchy.  Also, she has learned from her mistakes.

The plot is solid, and moves fast. But not too fast. They makes progress, and the decisions they make fits with the evidence. The  supernatural was woven into the plot from the start. And the supernatural part only grew. Which I gobbled up. It was fascinating how Garrett kept having to talk with Tanith, despite the mistakes he made. And he made mistakes. A lot.  But that was what I liked about him.  He dares to think outside the box, no matter if it gives him trouble with his boss.  He doesn't give up.  He just continues,  determinded to get justice for the victims.  

What I liked about this book, was that Garrett is forced to think about the box. To step into the supernatural. He have a choice: start believing, or  don't find the killer. 

So, what I didn't like about this book.  I didn't like the sex scenes with his girlfriend. It felt like they didn't add anything to the plot. Also, sometimes Garrett felt a bit.. dense. No, that's wrong. It felt like he was too arrogant, and didn't really think about what consequences everything would have.

Still, the book was enjoyable and I will probably purchase more of Alexandra Sokoloff's books in the future.

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