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Friday, September 23, 2016

Review: Strange Things Done by Elle Wild



Blurb from Goodreads:
A dark and suspenseful noir thriller, set in the Yukon. 

"What a wonderful dark, quirky, and complex debut novel . . . Canada’s north was never more sinister." —IAN HAMILTON, author of the internationally bestselling Ava Lee series

As winter closes in and the roads snow over in Dawson City, Yukon, newly arrived journalist Jo Silver investigates the dubious suicide of a local politician and quickly discovers that not everything in the sleepy tourist town is what it seems. Before long, law enforcement begins treating the death as a possible murder and Jo is the prime suspect. 

Strange Things Done is a top-notch thriller — a tense and stylish crime novel that explores the double themes of trust and betrayal.
My Review:
 
So I really REALLY didn't like Jo, the MC of this story, when I first started reading. And I never ended up liking her for even a minute during and after I finished the book. So that was strike one for me -- I had a hard time understanding Jo's woe is me attitude and reason for moving to this remote area of the world and I had an equally difficult time following her repeated and stupid actions in the course of the book. She was tracking a killer but she always trusted all the wrong people and I guess I assumed she would have had better sense since she was supposed to be a top notch investigative journalist. The problem is that nothing was unique about this story -- I feel like I've already read this story and seen movies with this exact premise.  I kept waiting for something interesting or unique to happen . . . but it didn't.  And this wasn't very thrilling -- there was a little action but nothing like those other, superb thrillers that I've read recently that kept me on my toes and the edge of my seat.  This was just so-so -- I liked the setting but had this been set in a city, it would have fallen flat.

This was sort of a mash-up of Extreme Exposure (investigative journalism romantic suspense) and In the Barren Ground (remote and insanely cold setting in winter) although not as successful as either and with way less romance than either of those unless you count falling for the VERY wrong person. Strange Things Done comes out tomorrow on September 24, 2016, and you can purchase HERE.
Jo stood listening, waiting for something intangible while the steam of her breath moistened her woolen scarf. The sky was still grey, reflected in charcoal shades in the ice beneath blowing snow, like a child's messy chalkboard.  The ferry had vanished, as though the river had claimed another victim. Joe wondered how thick the ice would have to be before it could be crossed. She pictured herself skating away on it, doing slow, graceful loops until she disappeared into the horizon line.

11 comments:

  1. It’s hard to enjoy a book when the main character annoys you. Sorry to hear that this was just so-so book for you, Eva. I haven’t yet read Extreme Exposure, though a lot of friends recommended it to me.

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  2. Not liking the MC is huge and makes it so hard to connect or even really enjoy the story at all, at least for me it really is. :( Sorry this wasn't quite the read for you. Wonderful honest review!

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  3. It can be extremely hard to keep reading when you don't like the MC, great review and glad you were able to stick it out!
    Tori @ In Tori Lex

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  4. Ugh, it's so hard to read books when you're constantly annoyed with the main character or just don't like them. I've never heard of this book but good on you for sticking with it. I probably would have thrown in the towel.

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  5. Hating the MC is so hard in a book. I usually need to at least like them a little or see growth. Sorry this wasn't better for you!

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  6. Oh, what a bummer! It really is tough to enjoy a book when you don't warm up to the protagonist. I'm sorry this failed to impress you- hope your next read is better!

    Ruzaika @ The Regal Critiques

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  7. Not very thrilling and no action? It's a pass from me then. I'm sorry this one wasn't that great for you. It's tough when you dislike the MC in a book too. Unless it's one of those where you are supposed to and it's done very well. Which it doesn't sound like that's the case here.

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  8. It's weird the MC, being who she was, would trust everyone. It should be the opposite, no? I'm passing up on this one, especially if the MC is so unlikeable.
    Genesis @ Latte Nights Reviews

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  9. There is nothing more frustrating than when an author tells you exactly why a character is fabulous in her job, and forgets that means she should be good in others related to it too. Like you know, investigation. Oi.

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  10. It's really hard (for me, anyway) to get past a MC that I don't like. That pretty much taints the whole experience for me.

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  11. This sounds like one of those Saturday Lifetime movies that I used to watch.

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