Title: Say You’re Sorry
Author: Melinda Leigh
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
My Rating: 4 stars
“Be careful, Ms. Dane.
You’re stirring up more than a few hornets’ nests.
You’re bound to get stung.”
This is the first time that I’ve read a book by this author, and I found her writing style to flow well. There was just enough descriptive writing that I was able to picture everything perfectly in my mind, and the writing never became too flowery or overdone. The small town atmosphere was conveyed in a believable way; there were opportunities for the setting to become banal, but the author was able to toe the line without making things cliche. I really enjoyed that the chapters were told from alternating perspectives; there were even chapters told from the killer’s point of view. We get to witness the story as it unfolds from all sides: the people investigating, the suspects, the killer, and briefly from the victim’s point of view.
“It amazed him that he could walk around in public, and no one saw through him. He knew what he was, and it wasn’t normal. Other people would be horrified at the things he dreamed about. He worked hard to pretend he was like everybody else.”
The romance initially felt very scripted, forced, and predictable. Towards the beginning the characters were very typecast and acted in very stereotypical ways; I found myself wishing they were a bit more unique. Looking back, I’m glad that I didn’t let these first impressions dictate how my reading experience went. As the story continued the characters became more complex and their personalities branched out, and they ended up being one of my favorite things about the novel. I started to really like Morgan as a character and can see her being one of the main reasons I continue with this series. She’s hardworking and smart, and her penchant for oversized purses and coffee is definitely something I can relate to! The forced feeling the romance started out with began to fade and eventually blended well with the main storyline.
As far as the mystery went, it was a little lackluster. I was happy that there was no crazy twist and reveal that came out of nowhere for shock value, but the truth that came out didn’t completely satisfy me. The author provided a few believeable suspects, but the answer they were aiming for was pretty clear from the beginning. I think I enjoyed this story more for the characters and how they investigated/worked together than I did for the mystery aspect. I can see this series turning into a comfort read; it isn’t too complicated, but it is engaging enough to keep my full attention. I’m looking forward to continuing the Morgan Dane novels and seeing what comes next!