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Saturday, April 17, 2010

My review of Queen of Hearts by K. Dawn Byrd.

About the book:

Daphne Dean is proud to be serving her country stateside during WWII as a reporter and an Office of Strategic Services operative. When the photograph she takes of the crowd at a murder scene places her on the mob's hit list, she's forced into hiding in a vacant mental asylum in the middle of nowhere with terrifying secrets of its own.

Daphne believed herself to still be in love with her ex-fiancée, Kenneth, until she spends several days locked away in the asylum with Vito, the mob boss' son. Can she put the terrifying events that occurred there behind her and allow herself to pursue a relationship with Vito? Or, will she return to Kenneth who has turned his back on his country by becoming a draft dodger and a black market racketeer? One thing's for sure, it won't matter if she can't escape the mental institution alive.

My review:

Queen of Hearts is a blend of so many things that it really held my interest. It had elements of Dick Tracy, Psycho, The Godfather, and more recently, Shutter Island. If you enjoy suspenseful stories set during WWII (stateside) that have moments where you'll feel like you're as scared as the heroine is, then you'll love this story. I personally prefer romantic elements in romantic suspense, and this story had a lot of that, too. It was tasty enough to keep me reading.

I was seriously torn and unsure for quite a while about who the bad guy was. At different times I liked them both. The author did a fabulous job of making you want her to run from both of them on occasion since each man told her the other guy was dangerous. It wasn't super-obvious who the real enemy was, and I loved that. It had me guessing for most of the story and I was terrified along with her.

Those elements in this novel that reminded me of Shutter Island were eerie, but so well done that I couldn't stop reading. It is obvious that the author understands mental institutions and their histories. That made the setting even more authentic to me. Did I mention the mob involvement and dead bodies? Oy, this story had it all. It was a great read and highly entertaining, but also contained a faith element that was impossible to miss. I highly recommend this story. It's a terrific debut.

Queen of Hearts is an e-book and was released in April 2010 by Desert Breeze Publishing.


Shawna Williams said...

Great review Michelle. I love this book too, and plan to post a review soon. Great job, K. Dawn.

K. Dawn Byrd said...

Thanks Michelle and Shawna! I enjoyed writing it.

fredamans said...

Great review Michelle!

I think I would most enjoy this story!

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