Blog Tour Review: Deception by Jonathan Kellerman (4/5)

Saturday 17 May 2014

Okay so one of my all time favourite authors is Jonathan Kellerman and I am very excited to be a part of the bookbridgr Boxset tour where I will be reviewing Deception.

Now I'm sure this is an author that needs no introduction, Kellerman released his first novel five years before I was even born, in 1985. That book is When the Bough Breaks and was the first Kellerman book that I read. Unfortunately this was back in the days before Kindle and before my city centre library got refurbished and got all new books, so I had to make do with whatever they had available which unfortunately was old and battered copies of most of his books. 

The second book I read was Compulsion, and I loved this book. I bought it at the airport before going on holiday and it is now probably one of my favourite Kellerman books. Then a few years ago I finally got a Kindle and could pick and choose what Kellerman book I wanted to read without having to hope the library had a decent copy available. Kellerman is also the author that kicked off my interest in Psychology leading me to study it successfully at 6th form and then not so successfully at university. I do love the psychological aspect of his books however and this led me to hunt out many more books and authors that were similar. For me though Kellerman is the king of this genre.


A voice from beyond the grave

Elise Freeman's chilling cry for help comes too late to save her. On a DVD found near her lifeless body, the emotionally and physically battered woman chronicles a year and a half long ordeal of monstrous abuse at the hands of three sadistic tormentors. But even more shocking than the lurid details is the revelation that the offenders, like their victim, are teachers at a prestigious LA prep school. If ever homicide detective Milo Sturgis could use Dr Alex Delaware's psychological prowess, it's now.

From the start, this case promises to be an uphill climb for the truth and a down and dirty fight for justice. Alex and Milo must penetrate the citadel of wealth and scholarship to expose the disturbing secrets and deadly sins festering amongst LA's elite. But power and position are not easily surrendered, and Alex and Milo may well be walking into a highly polished death trap...

First off it takes a very talented author to write a couple of books about the same character and keep an audience interested. It therefore takes an extremely talented author to write 29(!) and still have people eager to buy and read your books. Kellerman is that author and it's pretty astounding and impressive that there are 29 Alex Delaware books. That said a lot of reviews for his latest book err more towards the negative side, with the general feeling being that the series is becoming stale but I think there's plenty of life left in these characters yet.

Alex is one of my favourite fictional characters and picking up one of Kellerman's Delaware books really is like meeting up with an old friend. Or three as there's also Milo and Robin (that said a lot of Delaware fans aren't keen on Robin and she doesn't actually appear as much in this book as others). 

The one thing I love most about Kellerman's books is his writing, it is so good and atmospheric that the words jump off the page and you are transported into the books world. They also aren't for the faint hearted and often touch on harrowing subjects that for some may be difficult to read but generally there is an underlying message to be taken from his storylines. Kellerman is a wonderful storyteller.

I thought the storyline for this book sounded good which is why I chose it for my review book but I wouldn't say it was Kellerman's best work. It does have plenty of twists and turns and red herrings. This is something Kellerman does a lot, I have been wrong so many times in his books that you miss what is staring you in the face. Especially after the opening of the book I was thinking well this should be easily solved... that definitely was not the case. 

Another thing is that Milo was more of a prominent character in this book than Alex and I suppose for the sake of the story that did work but my favourite character is Alex and he's the one I enjoy reading about most. There are some great scenes with the police chief regarding Milo's constant use of Alex and whether he can actually solve a crime by himself. 

Overall I can reccommend this book to crime fans yet to discover Kellerman (of which there must be hardly any, surely?!) however it is the earlier books in the series where a new fan should start. That said Kellerman on a bad day is still better than most authors on a good day and so the vast majority of his books are definitely worth a read. 

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