Yet another series I come to without having read anything previous. This is actually useful, because it allows me to evaluate a book almost as a standalone and see how the author weaves in some of the backstory so we get to know what has come before and who the main character (and some of the secondary characters as well).
Rookie detective Eve Ronin has been called out to a scene where human remains have been found due to a wildfire that exposed them. Her partner, Duncan, is on the edge of retiring, which worries her, as she’s not certain that she can do the job. This is a recurring theme, and gets old a bit quickly.
How did she get the job? Based on the pieces of the backstory, she was essentially shoved into the position, leapfrogging other officers attached to the Sheriff’s Department, breeding resentment among some of the other LASD members.To add to the pile of simmering resentment – and since it’s Hollywood, after all – people are approaching Ronin about a film version of the escapades that happened in the previous book. As we go through the story, Ronin is also rehabbing her wrist with a physical therapist due to an injury sustained in the previous book.
The remains belong to a young woman who simply vanished some years ago. When another set of remains is found, and a jogger goes missing on the hills, Ronin and Duncan have their work cut out for them. While both skeletons have been determined to be female, there is seemingly nothing to tie the two female victims together. The detectives slog through the work of following the trail to determine what happened to these women and who needs to be brought to justice.
Warning: rape and suicide are both in this investigation. While the former is not depicted directly, but only as a recounting of events in the past, the latter is described as it happens, narrative-wise. There is also a blame the victim mentality going on for the rape.
Eventually – and some readers will figure this out before the reveal, as I did – the bad guy will be found and arrested for their misdeeds.
The story flows nicely, and except for a couple of draggy moments that clear up quickly, and the suspension of disbelief a reader will need to believe someone would be promote to homicide investigation in the way Ronin seemingly was, it’s well rounded and is a quick read.
Four out of five stars.