Thriller:Hidden in the Black Smoke

...Aside from the formatting issues, an enjoyable short procedural/mystery with an interesting female lead....

When Student Shoshana Whittley is found murdered in her bed, Detective Alice Morales and her team are deployed to find the killer. It is harder than it seems. Shoshana has a laundry list of enemies, some made at university and some who came with her. With a suspect list of most of her residence, neighbours, and university, finding the actual culprit will be hard.

‘Hidden in the Black Smoke’ is a short story with a lot of twists, but it is not the sort of thing readers can guess in advance. Instead you follow the police, as the formidably competent detective tracks down down every possible lead. This is definitely plot-focused, and you get to know the cast as they go about the investigation without a lot of time devoted to pure characterisation.

One thing I did note is that Detective Morales is a lesbian, but it is handled in a matter-of-fact way with the focus entirely on her job not her homelife. It is nice to see anyone LGBT in a story where it is not the main focus of the plot or their character. Also the title, while fitting the genre, does not seem related to the story. There’s no smoke and nothing hidden.

I have some issues with the formatting. On Kindle for PC, there is a wide space each side of apostrophes, quotation marks, and special characters which does make it harder to read the story. On the flip side, semi-colons have no spaces at all, making it really hard to read. On a few pages there are missing spaces and capitalisation of names is erratic. This book does not need a editor, but it is screaming for a good proof-reader and formatter. Some of these issues do disappear on Cloud Reader, so it may not be a problem for all readers.

Aside from the formatting issues, an enjoyable short procedural/mystery with an interesting female lead.

Rating: 3
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rz3300 (10 October 2016)
Well I like me a good thriller, and I like the title here. I am not sure really sure I know what expect from a sort and procedural mystery, but I think I like where that is leading so I am more intrigued. Should be an interesting one.

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