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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Stormtide to a Homicide by N.A.L. Gauthier

Stormtide to a Homicide by N.A.L. Gauthier
Publisher: Red Rose Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (310 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 books
Reviewed by Poinsettia

Ty Tyler, a well-established and more than competent Australian detective has reached the breaking point; for home, job, as well as relationships. Nothing is going right.

In the midst of his much-needed vacation, a dreaded killer moves to his town. His everyday problems jostle alongside the demands of the investigation.

Of course, one of his more ordinary problems IS that bunch of ghosts demanding justice. If only they didn’t show up at the most inconvenient times… but they do offer some useful insights.

He could be forgiven for dismissing his insights as more signs of an impending nervous breakdown…but he still must resolve this case, before one of his becomes the next victim.

Craving a mystery filled with so many twists it makes your head spin? Stormtide to a Homicide is the book for you.

From the moment I started reading, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for Ty. Juggling his responsibilities as a homicide detective and being the single father of three children has taken its toll on him. His attraction to Elyse, a co-worker, only complicates matters. The man’s life seems to be unraveling around him. As if that weren’t enough, Ty is plagued by the ghosts of homicide victims. I could practically feel the weight of all Ty’s problems on his shoulders.

As a hero, Ty is the classic working man in desperate need of a vacation. He’s dependable and good at his job, but that job has taken too much of his time. It was clear from the start that Ty is a loving father. However, his daughter Shelley has some serious problems stemming from the time a year ago when she ran away, problems that should have been addressed much sooner. When those problems come back to haunt her, I was immediately irritated with Ty. He could have prevented some of Shelley’s issues if he would have carved out some time to take her to someone who would help her work through her problems. On the other hand, I could understand Ty’s hesitant behavior. Shelley is a fourteen year old girl and Ty is desperately trying to keep the channels of communication open. Throughout the story, Ms. Gauthier does an excellent job of weaving a complicated and completely believable father-daughter dynamic between Ty and Shelley that really anchored me emotionally to the story.

In addition to creating wonderful main characters, Ms. Gauthier crafted an excellent mystery when writing Stormtide to a Homicide. It was filled with so many twists and turns that I was constantly in suspense about how it would all play out. Ms. Gauthier leaves a pretty good trail of clues, so I was able to figure out some parts of the mystery, but I was completely surprised when some of the pieces of the puzzle fell into place. There were parts of the ending that were left open, but there is no doubt in my mind that Ty will wrap up those loose ends.

I would have liked to get to know Elyse a bit better. Elyse is a smart investigator with a sexy side. She also has a big crush on Ty. However, that is really all I know about her. The flirting between Elyse and Ty as well as their spicier encounters helps add a touch of romance to the story that is a nice change of pace from the heavier parts of the plot. Still, I wish she would have played a larger part in the story so that she and Ty could interact more.

Despite this issue, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Stormtide to a Homicide. I recommend it to anyone looking for an engaging mystery with a splash of romance.