Review – Her Sister’s Death by K. L. Murphy
Her Sister’s Death started out strong with not one but two mysteries that hinted at intriguing parallels. I was listening to the audiobook and the three narrators covered the perspectives of the different characters well.
The Skinny on Her Sister’s Death
Val had recently learned that her sister had committed suicide. Devastated at the news and disagreeing with the verdict she set out to utilise her skills and experience as an investigative journalist to uncover what really happened. Terry, ex cop now security consultant coincidently was along for the ride in supporting the investigation, using his contacts to find out more information at the scene of the crime – The Franklin Hotel. Our final POV is Bridget a newly wed married to a brutish depraved oaf who is spending her honeymoon at the same hotel in the 1920’s.
Trigger Warning for abuse in Her Sister’s Death
I got to raise the following point as an observation and trigger warning for others The detailed depiction of domestic violence was repeated and didn’t, in my opinion add value beyond he first incident. Less would have been more. I don’t believe the reader needed the graphic nature of each attack.
That historical timeline was something else
The first incident shocked me. My notes at the time stated “What he did on their wedding night is one of the cruellest depictions of domestic violence, emotional and coercive control that I’ve read. I lived the dread of the wedding day. Kudos to the author”
The historical story conveyed dread and it is evident that this situation will deteriorate and not end well.
The Skinny with tons of cream and other unnecessary accoutrement in Her Sister’s Death
In the present day, it’s as if grief has made Val lose her professionalism and good manners. She’s rude, judgemental and adds nothing to the investigation with her attitude and jumping to conclusions. And where was the evidence of her famed research skills? If she’s spent an hour in the library or on her laptop researching the main characters, it wouldn’t have taken a circuitous route to find out what happened to her sister.
It is surprising that I still have ears to hear
There are elements of this story that worked for me, but most did not. My activity updates on Goodreads notes my increasing dissatisfaction with the story. If only I had sped up the audio sooner. Rookie mistake!
This book is 9 hours which is far too long. It’s the slowest mystery. And the historical timeline is too extreme and excruciating; Lawrence is a depraved monster in human skin. But why? There’s just an hour left and I don’t know why he uses every opportunity to terrorise his new bride. Nature or nurture? He’s evil, she’s nervous and oppressed. When will something else happen!!? A murder is alluded to, so hurry it up
Particularly after listening for 8.5 hours, a paranormal slot was bolted on. Leaving me to conclude that I’ve been listening to the attempts of combining two unrelated storylines with the thin agent of perfunctory mystery as the bind.
There’s a good short story in here with one timeline. If you’re looking for a book about murder, unease and dread, I would recommend Book Review – Imposter by LJ Ross instead
My thanks to NetGalley for a copy of a the audiobook in exchange for a candid review.
2 Stars - It Was Okay