Monday, September 19, 2011

Allison Brennan is a new author to me and I am glad to meet her


Recently I enjoyed two books from a new author to me, Allison Brennan.  I read “Love Me to Death” and “Kiss Me Kill Me”.  These tightly written romantic thrillers are the first two installments in her new Lucy Kincaid/FBI series.  Lucy was a secondary character in the previous trilogy “No Evil.”  In that series Lucy, a seventeen year old girl was a victim of a crazed serial rapist and killer.  With the help of the FBI, several of whom are her brothers, she is rescued but in the process she ends up killing her perpetrator. Now, eight years later Lucy has recreated herself into a strong woman who will never be a victim again.  She has earned a doctorate degree in criminal psychology and interned in every possible place she could to earn enough experience and credentials to make it into the FBI, including a stint in the morgue and working for a non-profit victims rights organization to bring down cyber-predators.  She wants to work with the FBI, the organization that helped bring down her attacker and knows she has an uphill battle. 

In the first book, “Love Me to Death” pedophiles Lucy has been tracking start showing up dead.  It appears to be the work of a vigilante.  Because of her connection to the victims and her personal history she becomes a suspect. Unbeknownst to her another threat is stalking her.  So begins a twisted thriller where you don’t know if it is her past chasing her or if it is a whole new threat.  She feels isolated and alone when she turns to her bother’s partner Sean Rogan for support.  He becomes her protector and wants to become so much more.  The story has so many twists and turns the ending comes out of nowhere.  I put this book down wanting to know more about the Kinkaids and Rogans.

The next book, “Kiss Me Kill Me” picks up the story about six weeks later and Lucy has taken her exams and completed the interview for the FBI.  Meanwhile Sean who has become her official boyfriend has received a call from a relative asking him to look for a female cousin who has gone missing.  Once again the story takes off quickly and I was spinning trying to keep up with all the red herrings and left turns.  Does Lucy get the job?  Will they find the cousin?  Who is killing all the girls?  Do Lucy and Sean ever get to vacation? While the first book was all about the crime and the family was only introduced to fill in a couple of blanks, “Kiss Me..” delves further into Lucy and Sean as individuals and their relationships with siblings.  Family issues rear their ugly heads which makes for a nice balance to the almost super hero skills of Lucy.

There is a cast of secondary characters in the Kincaid books that are useful to move the story forward but they really take a backseat to Lucy, Sean and the crime-solving.  You know in Stephanie Plum and Eve Dallas tales the supporting characters are critical to the main characters.  Not so in the Kincaid stories.  I hope this doesn’t cause the series to get stale too soon.  Maybe some of the other characters will move more center and expand the plots. 

Just a note I was reading a little of the bio for Allison Brennan and boy is she cool!  She worked for the California State Legislature as a consultant.  She married and had 5 kids.  She was crazy busy and wrote through it all, mostly after the kids went to bed.  She didn’t write because she thought she was going to be famous or otherwise but because it is what she does and who she is.  I can relate to that.  She wrote a book so she could say she did it.  It was in 2004 when she sold her first book “Prey” and it took off from there.  I am completely inspired by her.  It gives me hope that one of these days someone will be blogging about my book.

In closing I just want to say how proud I am of myself for sharing my thoughts on these stories without giving away any of the plot lines.  It would be a shame to give any of it away.

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