Nearly twenty years ago a teenage girl was murdered…
Samantha Carlson was just a young girl when her cousin, Emily, was brutally raped and killed in her own home. As a child, Sam’s family did their best to shelter her from the gruesome details. Now, working the crime beat for the Portland Tribune, Sam has the resources at her fingertips to investigate the case for herself.
Through the eyes of a killer…
After inheriting a family heirloom, an antique vanity table that once belonged to her murdered cousin, Sam begins seeing visions in the mirror’s depths. Like watching an old home movie, she bears witness to Emily’s murder. As if that weren’t frightening enough, she starts to see other things too: fleeting glimpses of the killer himself! Are the things she sees just a figment of her imagination or could something otherworldly be trying to communicate with her? When the killer strikes again and leaves clues behind meant specifically for Sam it becomes a race against time to try to catch him.
I was gifted a free copy of this book for an honest review, and here it is.
First, the good – there’s a good plot, likeable characters, and an interesting plot device in the mirror of the title; the plot device is used cleverly, without being overused, and never becomes boring or annoying (I actually think it could have been used a little more, without detracting from the book). The identity of the murderer remains a mystery until late in the book, which is good, there’s some nice misdirection that makes you think about someone else, and enough hints that if you’re paying attention you might figure out who the real killer is, but you can’t be sure until the author is ready to let you know.
The bad – the writing is not as good as it could be, and there are occasions where phrases and words are used either unnecessarily or incorrectly, and this can be jarring. It’s a short while before you get to the main plot, and while that isn’t really a terrible thing, it might have been better if there was an opening scene that featured the murder of Emily – had there been such a scene, I think I would have minded less that it took a while to get things moving, because I would have already had a sense of what was going to happen.
Overall, this is a decent book, that ends with a twist I didn’t see coming; with better writing it could be great, so if you like a thriller, this might well be for you.