This book reminded me of a 70's "heroine-in-peril" gothic---a BAD one. In the first 100 pages, our heroine decided: "if someone had murdered her aunt, she would find the killer. Or die trying." (We can only hope.) She runs into the police detective investigating her aunt's murder at the train station and thought "...he was so tall, so attractive, so sexy. Why would a man like that be a small-town homicide detective? (Ummm...he liked to eat?) And when they arrived at the house she inherited and went up to her childhood room, the detective looks around the room and says: "What a charming room. A young girl's dream come true---canopied bed, antiques and old lace, and a window seat where you can see all the way to the Catskills." (I don't know---the guy is starting to sound a little fluffy to me.) Oh, yeah, and this old faithful: "Damn, the woman was special: beautiful, smart, talented, and with enough fire in her temperament to justify the reddish chestnut hair." (Firstly, note to author: chestnut is defined as "moderate to deep reddish brown", so let's not be redundant. Secondly, I dated my husband at least a couple of times before he realized that I was beautiful, smart, talented and fiery...our perceptive hero figures it out on the basis of a couple of brief meetings? And how does he know she's talented? As far as the plot goes, he has not yet viewed any of her artwork. She could paint like a duck with paint on it's tail. And finally, let's not forget our bad guy, who spies on our heroine and observes that: "she slept like a Grecian goddess, with her hair splayed out over the pillow and her soft breasts trembling with each breath." I take it our gal didn't crawl into bed in her Patriot's t-shirt and forget to remove her make-up---let's not even touch morning breath. Anyhow, these were just a couple of the *highlights* of the interminable 400 pages of this book---unfortunately, I have a rule that once I start a book, I have to finish it---especially after investing $8.00 in it. Trust me, they should have paid me $800 to read it to the last page! And in case you are wondering, I was in a rush and I snatched up the book thinking that the author was Donna ANDREWS, who writes the series that started with "Murder with Puffins", which are all decent reads. Well, at least I can add this writer to my list of "Avoid At All Costs" authors. And that's my review. Thank you very much.
I loved this book and had a hard time putting it down. A good mystery with a little romance thrown in. A moving plot. I would recommend this book and author!!!!
Donna Anders outdoes even herself in SKETCHING EVIL. Known by her many fans for her ability to create a sense of danger and suspense-laden mystery, Anders is also conversant with the advances in modern-day forensic science. Her female protagonist in this book is a police artist, someone who unwittingly becomes caught in the trap she sets for a prowling rapist. There are shades of Jean Boylan, Frank Bender, and Mary Pat Gatliff, real-life artists who have an uncanny ability to draw the faces of someone who is hidden in the shadows, or recreate the faces of the dead by using a nameless skull, clay, makeup and wigs and, most of all, their own intuitive knowledge that seems to come from the voice of someone who cries out for justice. Anders's huge fan base will be delighted with this new--and most frightening--novel, and those who haven't yet discovered her will see what the clamor to read more and more Anders's novels is about! Start here, and work back through her other books. I think there are nine or ten psychological suspense novels--each one a bit more terrifying and mysterious than the one before. But be prepared: you will find yourself checking to be sure your doors are locked as you read SKETCHING EVIL. Highly recommended, and it also would make a great stocking-stuffer for your friends and relatives who enjoy this genre. Anders's books always scare me a little, but I'm afraid I can't stay away from them!