Thursday, May 19, 2022

ARC Review: Midnight Dunes by Laura Griffin

Midnight Dunes

Laura Griffin
Series: The Texas Murder Files
Publication: Berkley (May 24, 2022)

Description: When the shocking discovery of a murdered woman’s body disturbs the tranquility of tourist season, the police detective in charge of the puzzling case must work alongside the new filmmaker in town to pursue every lead in the new romantic thriller from New York Times bestselling author Laura Griffin.

After a scandal derails her television reporting career, Macey Burns comes looking for a change of pace in Lost Beach, Texas. She’s ready to focus on her first passion—documentary filmmaking—and has a new job working for the island’s tourism board, shooting footage of the idyllic beachside community. Her plans for a relaxing rebound are dashed when she realizes the cottage she’s renting belonged to the woman whose body was just found in the sand dunes.

Detective Owen Breda is under intense pressure to solve this murder. Violent crimes are rising in his small town, and he can’t stand to see anyone else hurt…especially not the beautiful documentarian who keeps showing up at the precinct

With the clock ticking, cameras rolling, and body count climbing, Macey and Owen must use all their resources to find the killer without getting caught in the crosshairs.

My Thoughts: This is a romantic suspense title that is third in a series. In this episode, Detective Owen Breda is trying to solve the murder of a woman found buried in one of the area's famous sand dunes. And filmmaker Macey Burns is trying to make commercials to highlight the attractions of the area for the tourist board.

Macey has left her current career as a television personality in disgrace. She's sunk all her savings into her new business as a filmmaker. She has self-doubts and still some guilt about her previous bad choices.

Owen is busy trying to prove himself as a detective and suffering some doubts of his own. He feels he isn't measuring up to the standards set by his older brother who is a successful detective. 

Macey finds that she has unknowingly leased the same house that the murdered woman lived in - and it seems someone wants something she might have left there. 

Owen and Macey's paths keep crossing as he's searching for clues and she's searching for perfect locations on the island to film. Both are really busy people who have different desires for a relationship. Owen is fascinated with her, but she is hesitant to start a new relationship with memories of her former relationship's implosion firm in her mind.

For me, this story suffered from an overabundance of characters. I'm assuming that quite a few of them were introduced in the previous two books of the series and were here to let readers know what was happening with them. I found it hard to focus on the two main characters of this story because so many other characters kept showing up.

The mystery was interesting and there was a nice amount of suspense both in relation to the crime and to the new relationship. Fans of the previous two books will enjoy this one.

Favorite Quote:
When she'd opened up to Owen, he'd seemed so nonjudgmental. He'd made her feel like he understood what it was like to screw up and regret it. She'd thought they had connected, but now it seemed like he was using their conversation against her. 
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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