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BOOK REVIEW: RISK (subtitle: A Thriller)
By Kathleen Morris
Published by Dunraven Press
258 Pages
Paperback ISBN 978-1-7379866-6-9
Protagonists Wilder and Grace (he plays guitar, she sings, comprising a third-rate opening act for a second-rate band that is touring the southwestern states in the U.S.) find themselves wrapped in a chase. They are the targets of said chase after they stumble upon and take possession of a secret stash left behind by some less-than-savory types, who would like nothing better than to reclaim their stash. These unsavories (also a man and a woman) will stop at nothing, including murder, to achieve their goal. Unfortunately, these unsavories have a boss who think his underlings have absconded with the stash, not realizing that Wilder and Grace are in the picture. Boss man and his sidekick chase the unsavories, who are chasing the musicians. It’s an exciting, whirling three-legged, three-dimensional thrill-chase of 258 pages.
Narrow escapes, discoveries of and changes in identities, unplanned difficulties, mistaken directions, false assumptions and even some overthinking get this thriller going and up to speed. With the momentum achieved quickly, the thrills and suspense are maintained consistently through the story – and kudos to author Morris for this pacing.
Solid character development is strong in each pair of our chase participants. There’s a cool head, there’s an artistic heart, there’s a hotblooded soul, to name a few. And yet, there are flaws with each character that lead to some circumstances affecting the degree of success of our three-legged race. A good dose of backstory for each character helps the reader understand what’s going on in the minds of our characters.
Kathleen Morris already has four books to her credit – each well-written book centers on a woman in the Old American West. In RISK, even though taken quite a wide step away from the genre of her first books, Ms. Morris maintains that same fine writing that is so rewarding for the reader.