Thursday, November 8, 2012

{Review} "A Rendezvous to Die For" by Betty McMahon

Title:  A Rendezvous to Die For
Author: Betty McMahon
Publication Date: November 11, 2011
Genre: Contemporary Mystery 
Format:  Paperback 272 pages  |  Kindle 408 KB

Buy this book on Amazon:  Paperback  |  Kindle Edition
Author's Website:
Author's Goodreads Profile:  Betty McMahon 

Synopsis from Goodreads: 

Photographer Cassandra Cassidy landed in the picturesque northern Minnesota town of Colton Mills, and started photographing weddings to pay the bills, but got her creative kicks making portraits of some noble, and some not-so-noble Indians on and off the nearby rez.

The Duluth, Minnesota newspaper hired Cassandra to cover a local 1830s Rendezvous reenactment. There would be trappers, mountain men and, of course, Indians. So Cassandra and her cameras headed north -- not knowing that her nemesis Eric Hartfield, a defrocked newspaper reporter, was heading there as well.

Not long after settling in and photographing some of the Rendezvous’ colorful characters, she and Eric crossed paths and exchanged some scathing words on the very public Rendezvous grounds. She would live to regret her parting taunt to Eric:  “The next time I see you, I’ll fire two warning shots – straight into your head!”

The sheriff  took their verbal scuffle into account after Cassandra discovered Eric in an Indian sweat lodge outside the grounds—with a tomahawk buried in his skull. Eric was well beyond any future such scuffles.

But a dead Eric may have the last laugh over his adversary as Cassandra becomes the main suspect in Eric’s demise. Now she’s up to her f-stops trying to sort out who is responsible.

Can a female photographer-amateur-sleuth, dragged into such a nightmare situation somehow dig herself out – and reveal the real murderer?
Diving in...
This book was a pretty quick read for me.  The mystery was great and the overall story was paced very well.  This one kept me guessing until the very end and when the killer was revealed it was a complete surprise.

While I did like this book, it wasn't one of those that I just loved although it's very well written.  I think that my main problem was that I didn't really feel like I got to know Cassandra very well.  I didn't feel like she was quite as well developed as she could have been.  I never really got a clear picture in my head of who she was or even what she looked like.  I know that she liked to wear red shirts, but that's about all the description of her I remember and that's probably because it's a key component in the story.  She does have a little back story, but even some of that is vague.  I know that she grew up in foster care but we never learn why.  She keeps touching a scar, and she seems to be afraid of fire, but again, we never learn anything about either thing.

I really liked Nick, but I think that he should have been introduced sooner in the story.  I know that this was not intended to be a romance book, but I think that the story would have been better if there had been a little more romance in it.

There are a lot of twists and turns in this story and it will keep you on your toes as Cassandra investigates these murders on her own.  She is determined to clear her name and she does some pretty drastic things to do it.

Overall I think it was a good story, but with a little more character development and maybe a little more romance it could have been great!  If you like a good mystery then this is probably a book you would enjoy.

*Disclaimer:  I was provided with a copy of this book courtesy of the author in exchange for an honest review.*

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