Title: The Shepherd
Author: Ethan Cross
Genre: Fiction - Murder / Mystery / Thriller / Suspense
Tracee, PR Specialist and Virtual Book Tour Coordinator, from Pump Up Your Book contacted me to see if I was interested in reviewing this book for the author's virtual book tour. The author sent me an autographed copy of the book. I was not paid for the unbiased review.
Summary (from goodreads.com):
Marcus Williams and Francis Ackerman Jr. both have a talent for hurting people. Marcus, a former New York City homicide detective, uses his abilities to protect others, while Ackerman uses his gifts to inflict pain and suffering. When both men become unwilling pawns in a conspiracy that reaches to the highest levels of our government, Marcus finds himself in a deadly game of cat and mouse trapped between a twisted psychopath and a vigilante with seemingly unlimited resources. Aided by a rogue FBI agent and the vigilante's beautiful daughter--a woman with whom he's quickly falling in love--Marcus must expose the deadly political conspiracy and confront his past while hunting down one of the most cunning and ruthless killers in the world.
Jim Morgan watched as reflections of the patrol car's flashing lights danced across the front window of the remote gas station.
Why this book?
- The premise sounded like another book I had read - Edge by Jeffery Deaver which I really enjoyed. I wanted to see how this book would compare to Edge since I like cat-and-mouse psychological thrillers, and "shepherd" was a term used in Edge also.
- Not bad for a first time author! Though the concept is really nothing like Edge.
- It is too busy for my liking. I guess it conveyed that it is an action-packed book.
- It is a pretty fast read, which I appreciate in a thriller
- The transition between chapters (or within the chapters sometime) could be a bit smoother, at times it was a little awkward. For example, a chapter may have ended "here", but the next chapter would start "10 minutes" before where the last chapter ended (well, okay maybe not exactly 10 minutes, but I hope it made sense).
- Full of plot twits and I liked that I didn't see the ending coming which is great! If you read this genre a lot, plots can get predictable.
- As I was reading, I had some questions about the relationship between certain characters, and I am glad those were all answered except one. But the unanswered one was mentioned in a dialog between another two characters - I have a feeling that this is the first book of a series, so this question may be answered in a future story.
- The two main protagonists are quite interesting with their inner struggle between good and evil. I wish Ackerman's past was elaborated a bit more as it was a fascinating concept. Perhaps another book?
- There were quite a lot of other characters which could get a bit confusing. I almost forgot whom one of the minor characters was when she/he appeared near the end since she/he first was introduced in the early chapter.
- I liked how it ended, but it definitely set up for a second book. At least it wasn't a cliffhanger like the final episode of a TV series!
- Even though I thought this book would be similar to that of Edge, the two stories were not alike at all. Edge has more strategies which I really liked, it almost was a "step by step" to show how to catch the killer. This book explored more the concept of what made a person good or evil (but is not a character-driven book)
- I still like plots with lots of twists that I can't guess :)
- Perhaps it is not fair to compare a first time author to a veteran like Jeffery Deaver. I did like Edge a bit more because of the strategic development (I like the "technical" explanations Deaver usually has in his books). I gave Edge 4 Stars, so I will give this book 3.5 Stars (might be 3.75 if the chapter transition was a bit smoother). I am a critical scorer though - only a really life-changing book would get a 5 Stars and it is very rare. Even if it's just inspiring but not life-changing because I didn't take any action, it is still not 5 Stars for me.
- If there is a sequel, probably would read to find out what happens next.
All reviews and posts are copyrighted by Christa @ Mental Foodie. Please do not use or reprint them without written permission.