Monday, January 26, 2015

Review: Kingdom of Lies

{on Goodreads}
Kingdom of Lies is the first mystery in a series featuring Keen Dunliffe, a gruff Enlglish Inspector with an honest-cop complex. Dunliffe is going through a dull and somewhat depressing period in his life (recent divorce, stalled career, etc.) when he is assigned to a case that seems ordinary at first but soon requires him to confront more danger than he's used to in his small, quiet village. A woman attending a local academic conference is found naked, floating in the pond on the grounds of a wealthy aristocratic family's estate. At first, Dunliffe expects this to be an open-and-shut case of an accidental death due to drunken skinny-dipping. Then Dunliffe gets a call, asking him to cozy up to the victim's close friend, Jillie Waltham, an American academic who has an inkling that there's more to the case than she's been told. As Keen and Jillie work together in London to solve the mystery, their personal relationship becomes more complicated, the case becomes more dangerous, and they realize that its implications are far reaching, both in history and in scope.

I picked this up on a whim after the spine caught my eye on a library shelf. My book rut has been somewhat ongoing, and I was looking for a read that would pull me in, even if it meant picking a cheesy mystery. Though this book doesn't have great ratings on Goodreads (3.26/4 from 72 ratings), I wouldn't hesitate to pick up the next in the series. I wouldn't say I'm going to become an avid fan of the series, but there are a few choice reasons that I can say that I'll probably look for the next one: (1) Keen Dunliffe is a great character. I love that he's full of flaws. For me, he's a different take on the classic, over-confident type of cop character that one usually sees in this type of story. (2) I couldn't guess the ending, or the "who done it" for the life of me. It caught me totally off guard, and that's always a plus for me when it comes to mysteries.

Bottom Line Rating: 3/5

Title: Kingdom of Lies
Author: Lee Wood
Publisher: Minotaur Books, 2005
Price: {Not available directly from Amazon or B&N, I'd suggest the library}
ISBN: 0312340303
Format: Hardcover
Source: Public Library
Book #1 of 2015

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