Genres: Mystery Romance, Romantic Suspense
Published by Minotaur Books
Released on February 6, 2018
As I cruise into the next installment in the Rockton-Casey Duncan series, it is like slipping into comfort jeans or reaching for a cozy throw blanket. I anticipate each new venture with Casey, Dalton, the people of Rockton and the bizarre circumstances to happen to this remote Canadian wilderness group.
This Fallen Prey is book three in a series that do not read well out of order as its an ongoing story though there is a solved murder mystery with each book.
The book begins with Casey, Dalton and Will out on grave digging duty when a plane lands on the hidden town’s runway. Thus begins their nightmare because the Council has sent them a serial killer to babysit for six months. His presence ripples through the town causing first general unease and then sharper repercussions. When there is an escape and murder, things go from bad to worse out there in the woods where survival on a good day is a crap shoot.
I found this one as thrilling and entertaining as the previous books and it is always a delight to get back with tough detective Casey, capable Dalton, and the rest. Each book has them forced to conduct a criminal investigation on a shoestring, wonder just what the Council is hiding from them, and keep the quirky and often dangerous town residents and people in the woods under control.
This one pushes them ethically because they are told in a note that they are meant to guard and house a serial killer, but they are not equipped for it and this puts their town in danger. The Council doesn’t care because the step dad of the killer has ponied up a wad to make it happen. It sure would be simpler and safer to solve their problem with a bullet and Casey is tempted, but knowing Dalton would have to be complicit and his moral compass points true north with a belief that people are innocent until they do a guilty act has her holstering her weapon and twitchy. Then, they must deal with treachery from within once again. I do enjoy the complexities they face particularly when they get out in the woods.
Speaking of the woods, this one has them out in the wild and I do enjoy how the author details in her world and gives it such chilling atmosphere. Its a survival story as much as a thriller. And a love story as much as those as Casey and Dalton worked as a team throughout.
There were some really dark and evil characters in this one and they aren’t two-dimensional, but fully fleshed out just like the shades of gray types that include Casey to some degree. Always fascinating to see how they all interact. Or don’t, and we end up with an intense action-packed scene.
I did have a few ticky-tack issues with this one. There were times when Casey, for as trained and smart as she is, doesn’t act like it. There are a few thrilling moments that were only there because she was impulsive or went soft and chose to give in to people she shouldn’t have. I don’t blame her for what resulted in how it affected others because, in truth, others acted with evil intent and probably would have found a way. But yeah, I was being told how cold, calculating and smart she is when I thought she was as big a marshmallow at times as Dalton because she let her friendships or attempts at friendships override good sense and that includes her dog. Leave the puppy behind until it is fully trained. Seriously. I can think of half a dozen bad situations avoided by not taking a dog only weeks into some of its training into the field. I used to live near a K9- security dog training facility and I know for a fact that it takes years before some of those dogs are field-worthy if then. Never did a puppy get put in the field especially for work they were doing- manhunt for armed serial killer? Nope!
Okay, now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, let me reassure you that I in no way hated this book. Those were little things that kept jabbing at me so that this was super good, but not amazing. I am oh so curious about the conspiracy element that is growing stronger in the background and that last few twists on a new Rockton resident and the secrets of a long standing one. I can’t recommend this series enough for thriller romance fans and particular those who enjoy survival settings.
Mt TBR #16
Literary Pickers #25 knife