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Lunch » Tags » Mystery » Reviews » "Shaken" » User review

Novel by J. A. Konrath

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"Whole lot of shakin' goin' on." Song lyrics

  • Feb 24, 2011
Former Chicago detective Jackie "Jack" Daniels spent much of her career putting away criminals. she felt she achieved the best results when she was able to remove psychotic and deranged killers who preyed on helpless women.

This story is segmented into three parts. Once Jackie was on the police force, in the segment twenty-one years ago, she goes undercover to attempt to catch a serial killer who was dismembering and murdering women.

The next segment covers the time period three years ago when Jack and her partner were following John Dalton when a body was found and a vehicle matching Dalton's was seen leaving the area.

In the present day segment, Jackie has been abducted from her home and is bound and awaiting torture by the killer, "Mr. K."

It is difficult when a story moves through time periods. In this story with three time periods it resulted in the loss of the story's momentum and suspense. Some of the segments were only one page long and this resulted in a somewhat confusing flow of events.

There was lots of torture and evil people in the story and many instances where the reader must suspend their sense of logic. In the first segment, Jackie is described as wearing a size six, so she would be about one hundred pounds. She is abducted and finds herself naked in the killer's home. Then she must defend herself against a man described as over two hundred pounds. Overpowering her captor seemed to stretch my belief.

When she is again abducted in the final segment, she is taken from her home while sleeping with her boyfriend. She had put some security on her home but it wasn't enough. How likely would this be for an attempt and for success to abduct someone while another person is in the room? I don't know.

Finally, the ending was unrealistic and unsatisfying. Deus ex machina is defined as a plot technique where a seemingly inextricable problem is solved with a contrived and unexpected intervention of some new character. This is never acceptable in literature. The author has written some enjoyable novels in the past but this novel disappointed.

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February 25, 2011
Don't know whether I'll read this one but I've got a couple of Konrath's novels on my IPad awaiting my attention. Nice review.
February 24, 2011
Great review, Mike! I'm going to have to pass on this one- I really don't like it when a story doesn't flow and inexplicable plots come into play- the whole kidnapping with a security system AND someone laying next to you, especially a lover, highly unlikely. Also, someone 1110-120 lbs overtaking someone over 200 lbs, unless it's some heavy duty Krav Maga, highly doubtful. Thanks for sharing :)
About the reviewer
Mike Draper ()
Ranked #54
Michael A.Draper retired from working as a financial planner with Mass Mutual.   Married to Diana for 48 years, one son and daughter-in-law and two lovely granddaughters.      … more
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About this book



Author: J. A. Konrath
Genre: mystery and suspense,
Publisher: Amazon Encore
Date Published: 02-22-11
ISBN: 978193559216
Format: paperback
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