Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Review: The Perfect Secret by Steena Holmes

The Perfect Secret by Steena Holmes

Publisher: SH Press
Pages: 344
Format: eARC 
Buy the Book: Amazon 

Goodreads:  Everyone has secrets — some deadlier than others

She was on cloud nine after accepting an offer of a lifetime. A simpler life that what you she was accustomed to. What could go wrong?
Starla Bishop learned to survive in the foster-care-to-jail system in New York City. There she learned the tools and skills she put to work later to con jewel thieves, drug traffickers, and mobsters out their fortunes. Now fresh out of her latest stint in jail, she accepts a too-good-to-refuse offer—a perfect life on a silver platter. Starla has everything she ever wished for: a simpler life, a normal life, a new start with new job, a straight job—a receptionist for Soil and Springs Landscaping run by a famous botanist. And it got even better—a whirlwind romance and engagement to her boss’s charming ex-husband.
But everything comes with a price. When bodies start turning up in the gardens of her employer, Soil and Springs Landscaping, Starla and her fiancé are hauled into jail for questioning. The revelation of Starla's secret, previous life and her special skills make her a prime suspect.
How much does Starla want the perfect life, and did she use her special skills to keep it,  or is this just her biggest con yet? The shocking truth is closer than anyone thinks?
Everyone has secrets, some worth killing for.

Kritters Thoughts:  Starla Bishop has a checkered past, so if something is going on it could be easy to blame her.  She left prison and ended up in the perfect situation with a great job, a car and a place to live, but sometimes things are really too good to be true.  Told in almost two different timelines - the current as she has been brought in by the police to be interviewed in regards to her bosses who may be serial murderer and the other timeline goes months into the past when she is exiting jail after four years and she begins this job with these interesting characters.

I liked Starla as a character, but you could tell early on that the reader wasn't getting the whole truth from her and/or anyone else!  This was a book where you couldn't trust anyone, but for me it didn't bug me a bit.  I just knew that someone in the mix was guilty and was prepared to keep reading to figure it all out.  For me that is when I can say the pacing was just spot on with the book and I find that pacing for me matters most when you are reading a mystery/thriller because the book needs to be continuously moving forward, so you don't feel stuck in one spot without a clue or discovery to move the reader forward to the resolution.  

I knew before reading this book that I loved Steena Holmes, but I was nervously excited to read her first foray into the mystery/thriller genre and I think her writing combined with great pacing made for a great debut in the genre.  I hope she keeps writing in this genre.  I want more!

Rating: absolutely loved it and want a sequel
Ebook 20 Challenge: 44 out of 100

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from the author.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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