REVIEW: Crime Wave by Rose Pressey

crime wave elenasquareeyesMaggie has taken over her late uncles PI agency in Miami. With a love of old detective shows Maggie feels like she knows what she’s doing. That all changes when her client who hired her to find out if his wife is having an affair suddenly turns up dead. Her cheating-spouse case becomes a murder one and when the police don’t always want to listen to her, Maggie with the help of her elderly, knitting needle–wielding assistant Dorothy are on the case. But when more people seem to be getting hurt and men begin to follow Maggie, will her first case be her last?

I shall start by saying I did not like this book but as it was short at just over 200 pages and completing and reviewing it would fill the PI crime genre for the Eclectic Reader challenge I powered through it.

I found the language and writing incredibly simple and full of awkward and cringe-worthy clichés. As I was reading it some sections reminded me of bad fanfiction (I will be the first to say there’s some amazing novel-length fanfiction out there but also some very paint-by-numbers stuff) in this instance Crime Wave was paint-by-numbers. One example of the not-great writing is: “It was hard to concentrate with Jake sitting beside me, especially when his manly scent kept tickling my nostrils.” Seriously?! Manly scent?! There was so many phrases that just made me roll my eyes.

There’s some moments in Crime Wave that should have been tense and exciting, for example when Maggie and Dorothy realise they are being followed by some big burly looking guys and they have to try and lose them, but the way it’s written makes it very bland. Also the way both Maggie and Dorothy act in these situations are often unbelievable.

Then there’s detective Jake Jackson. He’s working on the case of Maggie’s clients’ murder and he just seems to be everywhere! For a long time I thought it would be revealed that he was pretending to be a detective because he was being so creepy and stalker-ish. He would suddenly appear behind Maggie, obviously scaring her and he’d think it was funny. He would also look down on Maggie because she was someone who was new to being a PI (yes she wasn’t always that good at it and she was learning as she went along) and he wouldn’t leave her alone even when it seemed like she was uncomfortable or didn’t want his help. I did not like him at all and the way it tried to make him seem flirty made it even creepier.

Things just happened in Crime Wave, Maggie spent most of her time following people around and that managed to get her the answers most of the time. Also there was a lot of characters and suspects but you never really spent enough time with them for you to think they were shifty or who might be the bad guy. Maggie would ask them like three questions and then leave it. She wouldn’t keep pressing to find out what happened and in some ways, it wasn’t even her investigative skills that solved the case.

The writing in Crime Wave was simple and cliché, any moments of action weren’t exciting and the humour fell flat. I definitely won’t be continuing this series and I’m glad I only spent 99p on it on Kindle. 1/5.

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