Saturday, February 5, 2022

ARC Review: The Wrong Woman by Leanne Kale Sparks

The Wrong Woman

Leanne Kale Sparks
Publication: Crooked Lane Books (February 8, 2022)

Description: The past is never far behind, as a string of murders threatens to unleash long-buried secrets in this pulse-pounding thriller for fans of Melinda Leigh and T. R. Ragan.

The only survivor of Denver’s notorious “Reaper” serial murders, FBI Special Agent Kendall Beck grapples with the ghosts of her past by seeking justice for victims of abuse. She’s neck deep in a particularly ugly case involving the disappearance of five-year-old Emily Williams—but her investigation is derailed when her best friend and roommate, Gwen Tavich, turns up dead floating in a nearby lake.

Devastated by the news of Gwen’s death, Kendall teams up with Denver detective Adam Taylor to find the killer. Gwen’s fiancĂ©, Ty Butler, is being evasive about the last time he saw Gwen, and as the evidence mounts against him, he’s arrested for the murder. With every new clue, Kendall questions how well she really knew her friend. And when Gwen’s dark secrets begin spilling out one by one, she begins to understand the devastating magnitude of her murder. The Reaper has returned to Denver—and he’s not stopping at just one victim.

As the trauma of Kendall’s past comes roaring back, she and Adam have no time to spare before more bodies start piling up. And then Kendall makes a shocking discovery that reveals the horrifying truth behind Emily Williams’s disappearance. Now, Kendall must confront her darkest fears as she and the Reaper face off one more time.

My Thoughts: FBI Special Agent Kendall Beck is working a case of a missing child. What looks like a kidnapping at first turns out to be something else. The child is found hiding in a neighbor's garage and near to death from exposure. The story the little girl tells about what her father did to her changes the case to trying to prove that Scott Williams abused his young daughter. 

Meanwhile, Denver Homicide Detective Adam Tyler is trying to solve the murder of Jenny Rose who was found dumped on a golf course after being tortured and murdered. When he's the last one out of the office, his boss sends him to Kendell Beck's house because she reported her car stolen.

Kendell's housemate Gwen had borrowed the car and no one has since her for a few days. Her fiancĂ© doesn't seem concerned, but Kendell is. when Gwen's tortured body is found a few days later, Adam and Kendell begin working together to find out who killed her. 

This was an excellent story. I liked the fast-paced action. I also really enjoyed getting into the mind of Kendell who is dealing with grief because of the loss of a woman who was like a sister to her. I liked her growing friendship with Adam. 

I enjoyed the way the various cases Kendell and Adam were working on came together and how the story was gradually revealed. Fans of fast-paced and introspective mysteries will enjoy this one. 

Favorite Quote:
Kendall laughed. She couldn't help it. Adam had the whole lost puppy dog eyes down, and it was just about the most pathetic thing she'd ever seen.

And it felt good, too. She rarely allowed herself to be happy these days. She had a death grip on her grief, never letting it get far away. It was the one constant in her life. The one thing she could control, and decide when to let it go. And it fueled her anger, which propelled her headlong into the investigation. 
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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