“CHASING SYMMETRY” (RILEY’S PEAK SERIES BOOK 1), BY TEMPESTE BLAKE
PUBLISHER: POCKET ACORN PRESS; 1 EDITION; MAY 25, 2016
Wow, do I have a good book to review for you today! I just finished “Chasing Symmetry,” by Tempeste Blake and was blown away at how fantastic this novel was! Let me begin by saying that Tempeste Blake is actually a collaboration between two writers Nancy Smith and Cat Trizzino who met in an online writers’ group, but there is not one moment in the novel where you would ever guess that this was co-authored. “Chasing Symmetry” is part romance, part crime, part suspense and is an absolute finish in one sitting read.
I hate to do a bulleted list but there are several characters and they are all important, so here is a quick run down!
- Bianca James – an art professor at Brookefield college, used to be in a relationship with Dylan Tierny
- Finn Tierny – a local cop in Riley’s Peak, helps take care of his ailing father
- Dylan Tierny – was a cop until there was an accident that caused him to quit the police force and turn to drinking and being crazy.
- Mack Tierny – Finn and Dylan’s father, used to be a cop, has brain tumor, his wife Rose left them when the boys were young
- Chief Carmichael – Chief of police in Riley’s Peak, married, not nice
- Tucker Baranski – a local cop in Riley’s Peak, close friends with Dylan, works with Finn, hearty eater
- Maris Romero – Bianca’s best friend, also a professor at Brookefield
- Jewel Glasser – shrink at Brookfield, dating Dylan Tierny
- Charity Beacham – prissy, high-society woman in Riley’s Peak
- Helen – Bianca’s elderly and eccentric neighbor
Back to the novel, Bianca is in her classroom at Brookefield one evening when she discovers a woman bleeding and dying in the storage room. Although Bianca tries to help save her, she dies, and Bianca lands at the top of Chief Carmichael’s suspect list. Bianca learns that Finn has returned to Riley’s Peak and their police force, and she quickly realizes how intent he is on protecting her. Everyone seems to have an opinion on the murder and while the investigation is under way, strange and threatening things start happening to Bianca. The more Finn tries to protect her and find the murderer, the more they realize they have feelings for each other.
The reason I list all of the characters is this… This novel is a page-turner from the first word making you wonder “whodunnit” and why. There are so many characters intertwined in various ways, that the authors make it impossible to figure out who has done which things (murder, breaking and entering, creepy phone calls, etc.). There are other creepy characters,and not-so-creepy characters that are very important to the story, but those listed above are either trying to solve the murder, are suspected of murder or other strange happenings, being questioned, helping Bianca, or trying to kill her. There is also – of course – a love triangle involving Dylan, Bianca, and Finn. Bianca ended things with Dylan when he started drinking and acting a fool. Now Bianca and Finn are falling for each other, but Dylan is still in love with her and trying to clean up his act. Then don’t forget Jewel, who is in love with Dylan, but she is nothing more than an on-again, off-again thing to him. This all equals romance, tension, excitement, and anger all wrapped up together.
Overall, I thought Tempeste Blake’s first collaboration, “Chasing Symmetry,” was outstanding. This novel is a shining example of incredible, suspenseful and engaging writing. There are enough clues and side-stories to avoid frustration in trying to figure everything out, but yet you will still be shocked several times as the characters continue to unravel. As you read you will quickly cheer for Finn and Bianca, hoping they end up with their happily ever after, and you also grow attached to Dylan as he’s trying to turn his life around. There’s just enough of romance, suspense, family, hardship, and victories to make this a damned-near perfect book! “Chasing Symmetry” is a must read novel and Tempeste Blake is an author to watch!
Want to learn more about Tempeste Blake? Visit: http://www.tempesteblake.com/
*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.