Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Just Your Average, Ordinary, Everyday Police Procedural

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

(Note:  Although this review will not contain spoilers for The Line Between Here and Gone, it may inadvertently reveal plot surprises from the first book in the Forensic Instincts series.  As always, I recommend reading books in a series in order.)

Photojournalist Amanda Gleason never dreamed she'd be raising a child by herself, let alone watching one die.  As the 34-year-old sits by her newborn son's hospital bed, she longs for the baby's father—not just because she's still grieving for Paul Everett, but because he might have been the only one able to donate the stem cells his son so badly needs in order to survive.  When a friend gives Amanda photographic evidence that Paul—who was presumed dead even though his body was never found—is actually alive, she's stunned.  The betrayal stings.  Her own hurt doesn't matter now, though, not when her baby is fighting for his life.  Amanda must find Paul before it's too late.

Since Amanda doesn't have the time or the resources to hunt down her missing boyfriend, she turns the case over to the professionals.  Forensic Instincts is New York City's premiere private investigation firm.  Headed by profiler Casey Woods, the company also consists of a retired FBI agent, a former Navy SEAL, a psychic, a "techno-genius," and an evidence-sniffing dog.  Together, they agree to find Paul Everett using whatever means necessary.

It doesn't take the FI team long to discover there's more to their missing persons case than meets the eye.  Soon, they're looking into crooked politicians, screwy real estate deals, drug dealing, even mob involvement.  It's not too tough to see why Paul wanted to disappear.  Still, with an infant's life hanging in the balance, the investigators know they have to close the case.  And fast.  As the stakes get higher and higher, the FI team works harder and harder, and a worried mother gets more and more desperate.  Can Paul Everett be found in time to save his dying son?  That's the question haunting everyone's thoughts, the question driving FI team members to put everything on the line, risking it all to help a helpless infant win the battle for his life.

The Line Between Here and Gone, the second book in Andrea Kane's Forensic Instincts series, revolves around an intriguing premise.  Unfortunately, the rest of the story doesn't do it justice, wandering down paths both unoriginal and predictable.  The flat, stereotypical characters don't help matters.  The race-against-time plot makes for a fast, exciting read, just not one that's in any way unique or surprising.  I want a whole lot more from a police procedural and this one didn't deliver for me.

Oh, and as part of the book's blog tour, I'm supposed to give you this excerpt from the book: “Lyssa,” she said when she heard her friend’s voice. “I need you to come over and relieve me. It’s not Justin. He’s okay. But can you come now?” She sagged with relief at the reply.
“Thanks. It’s an emergency.”   

(Readalikes:  No specific titles come to mind.  Suggestions?)

Grade:  C-

If this were a movie, it would be rated:  R for strong language, sexual content and violence

To the FTC, with love:  I received a finished print copy of The Line Between Here and Gone from the generous folks at Harlequin MIRA (via those at Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc.) as well as an e-ARC via Netgalley.  Thank you! 

3 comments:

  1. Did you read the 1st in this series? It sounds right up my alley, but if others get this low of a grade from you I don't need to waste my time.

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    Replies
    1. No, I haven't read the first one. I didn't even realize it was part of a series until a couple chapters in. Like I said, I think THE LINE ... could have been a good novel, it was just too generic, with very cliche characters and an overdone plot. Plus, the writing wasn't that great. If you like forensic-type mysteries, try the Temperance Brennan series by Kathy Reichs or Jeffery Deaver's Lincoln Rhyme series. I recommend both, although I have to warn you that both series are definitely R-rated.

      Delete
  2. I appreciate your ratings system for those like me with a low tolerance to swearing!

    ReplyDelete

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