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Thursday, September 9, 2010

Breaker's Reef by Terri Blackstock

A Cape Refuge rookie police officer has found the body of a Cape Refuge teenage girl floating in the bay. However, thanks to his carelessness in moving the body without gloves, Chief Matthew Cade cannot identify the killer. Besides having another killer on his hands, Cade is trying to figure out how he can ask Blair Owens to marry him-but it can't just be a simple question. However, he did not expect that his romantic scheme would get him into trouble with the law. A popular mystery author has moved to Cape Refuge and Sheila Caruso has taken a job with him typing his old novels onto his computer for him. His eccentric nature almost scares her off the job, but the longer she stays with him, the more she wonders if this strange man is the killer everyone is looking for, especially since all his books are from the viewpoints of killers. With more uncertainty on Cape Refuge, will everything ever get back to normal?

Even though Terri Blackstock should have departed from Cape Refuge killings several books ago, she actually found a way to make this final installment in the series interesting. The case is up to Terri Blackstock par, and maybe even above. But most of all, she finally wrote an interesting showdown. However, as I expected with this last book of the series, impending wedding bells put a damper on things.

The miracle of the Cape Refuge cast of characters is the fact that they never changed throughout the entire series. Cade, Blair, Morgan, Jonathan, and Sadie never changed. This is not necessarily a good thing, but it is not a bad thing either. In this final book, Terri finally created a good villain whose identity is hidden until the last chapters. The Cape Refuge characters have not always been model characters, but they are not disgraceful either.

Terri Blackstock has always been able to build a strong case in her mysteries, and Breaker's Reef is no exception. Her unique multiple point of view plots get the story at all angles and through different perspectives. As a side bar, this title actually makes sense. However, the ongoing relationship between Cade and Blair finally came to a head at an inopportune time for the series. This is the main problem with the book. However, Terri actually created an interesting showdown-two of them actually-fueled by true surprise and ambiguity. This book rivals Cape Refuge for the best book of the series.

At least Terri Blackstock found a way to end this series on a good note, which was the best thing she could have done. The Cape Refuge series was not the best series in the world, but neither was it the worst series in the world. Terri Blackstock remains to be one of the best suspense authors on the market.

4 stars

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