Hello, everyone! Welcome back Between The Lines... I hope you're all ready for a thrill ride, this week, because I've got a fantastic one lined up for you! Before we start talking about the most breakneck-paced book I've read this year, I feel obligated to remind you that this is an unsolicited, unbiased review: I was not approached or compensated by the publisher or author in any way. Now that the legalese is out of the way, climb on in, stow your belongings in the mesh compartment in the seat in front of you, pull the bar down 'til it clicks, and get ready to follow me on a wild ride through Cori Lynn Arnold's novel Thin Luck!
Robyn Hughes was a successful TV reporter in Connecticut (a little ways from Aviario, perhaps?) before a terrible accident got her arrested. Now, after serving her prison term, she returns home, wanting nothing more than to reacquaint herself with her husband Nick and their infant son, Kyle. But Nick never comes to pick her up, and by the time she's able to get home, he and Kyle are both gone. With most of her resources stripped down, and no one willing to trust her, Robyn has to rely on her own street smarts and her investigative reporter's instinct to track Nick across the country so that she can get Kyle back. As the title implies, however, luck is not on her side, and a string of unfortunate mishaps begin to amass until Robyn is wanted once more, this time with her own criminal nickname: "The Bonnie Without A Clyde". When Detective Turner is assigned to track Robyn down, he must put together the pieces and bring her in ... but he discovers something else in her past which might change how things work out for everyone involved.
From page one, I wanted to know what was going on: who Robyn was, why she'd been in prison. Cori Lynn Arnold has a deft hand for suspense, stringing it taut between chapters like a violin. Robyn's cross-country quest to find Nick and Kyle is reminiscent of The Fugitive. I would say that it would make for an amazing mini-series adaptation, but it doesn't need one: Arnold's descriptions are at once rich and succinct, putting you in the scene without slowing down the story. Readers careen along with Robyn from one chance encounter to the next, and every stranger she meets is as richly detailed as our heroine. Things connect and branch off each other in unexpected, delightful ways, and culminate in a California showdown which left me holding my breath with every page turn.
My only thing which took me a little out of the read was the fact that Arnold switches from Robyn's first-person voice to third-person during the scenes with Detective Turner ... but it grew on me as the novel progressed. Hearing Robyn's tale in her voice not only makes it easier to see inside her mind, but helps wrap the reader up in it all and forget that outside of everything that Robyn is dealing with, life rolls on. When Detective Turner comes on the scene, only then do we catch glimpses of the ripples the plot is making in the "real" world, and asked to decide if we really do want to root for Robyn.
The little details really help this book shine: each chapter begins with Robyn's location, and the codes for whatever law she breaks in that location, leaving us to guess how it's actually going to happen. All in all, this was a fantastic novel: I read it in a little over a day, and after skimming through it to find the high points for this review, found myself wanting to read it again. Those who prefer e-books will find Chapter 18 worth the price, alone, but I expect that I'll be purchasing a printed copy for my shelf at some point in the future.
You can get your own copy of Thin Luck here on Amazon, or through Smashwords. Cori Lynn does not have a blog, but you can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or Goodreads!
Thank you for joining me for another indie book review! Please remember that reviews are what help independent authors like Cori and me sell books ... if you read something, review something! I hope you'll join me next week for another review - this one's a double-shot: two novellas by Jette Harris!
Until then, as always, I remain your hostess,
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