Thursday, February 7, 2013
Touch and Go: a book review
With any other type of book, I patiently let plot unfold at whatever pace the author chooses. With thrillers, I want to know whodunit and I want to know whodunit now.
So . . . . may have accidentally on purpose leafed towards the back of the book at some point while I was still in the first 100 pages to read just enough to have a pretty good idea of whodunit while I finished up the last 300 pages. I know, I know. This defeats the point of reading thrillers. But I meant it when I said I just can't handle it.
Even if I did have a pretty good idea of the true bad guy while I read, that really didn't cut down on the suspense. "But how is that the bad guy?!" I muttered to myself while I kept turning pages. It's a complex, albeit it somewhat improbable, story about the kidnapping of a well-to-do and seemingly picture perfect Boston family, the Denbe family. And it turns out the Denbe family has a lot of dirty laundry to air out. Just how well is father Justin's multi-million construction company really doing? Is wife Libby mentally stable? What kind of extracurriculars has 15-year-old daughter Ashlyn been up to? And, of course, the big question: why would anyone kidnap them?
The whole story may push the "would that really happen" envelope, but then again, it's a thriller. Accept Touch and Go as entertainment rather than great literature and you won't be disappointed. Gardner skillfully incorporates everything you expect from a good thriller. Really bad guys. Massive secrets. Conflicts of interest.
If I have one gripe with the book, it's the mysteries surrounding the past of main character Tessa Leoni, a private investigator, that are never clarified or elaborated on. Is that because Gardner plans to keep Tessa as a main character in future books where more of her back story is revealed? I suspect so, but I don't know for sure. If this book is Tessa's only shot at explaining herself, I have to say I'm a little unsatisfied. If a murder trial (in which she was the defendant) is a major piece of Tessa's story, I want a little more than just allusions to it every few chapters.
In following with the rest of the book, the conclusion of Touch and Go seemed especially improbable, but not unsatisfying. And man, oh, man was I glad to get there and see how all of Gardner's plot twists and turns played out in the end.
You can find more information and join the discussions about Touch and Go over at the BlogHer Book Club.
Disclosure: I participated in this review for the BlogHer Book Club. I was compensated for my time and received a complimentary copy of the book. However, all opinions expressed in the review are my own.
Posted by Ada Igoe at 8:10 AM