Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Face of Deception and The Killing Game (Eve Duncan Series) by Iris Johansen

Kiki's Rating: 3 stars and declining

When I first starting reading the Eve Duncan series I was excited.  This was a new twist to the forensic thrillers that I love to read.  As I finished the first book and moved onto the second, I noticed a pattern.  The main character started to bother me.  Eve is very naive to the outside world because she has closed herself off, so when natural things, like love, come upon her she has no idea.  This was nice for the first book, a little annoying for the second book, but as I read into the fourth book I had enough.  I couldn't even finish the fourth book in the series.

See, Eve Duncan is a forensic sculptor who reconstructs faces for the missing.  She does mainly children she says for the satisfaction of bringing peace to the families and bringing the child home.  The real reason is that she is a victim herself having lost her daughter, Bonnie, at the hands of  a serial killer.  The catch is that the serial killer was executed before he could reveal where Bonnie was buried.  With the help of her "friend" Joe Quinn and some other exciting characters, John Logan, Sarah and her dog Monty, her mother Sandra  and Jane, her adoptive daughter, Eve searches for the remains of Bonnie in order to bring her "home".  This plot idea makes for a very exciting, but repetitive, novel.  See, what parent would give up the chance to bring closure to their pain, and what sadistic killer wouldn't take advantage of that vulnerability.

Don't get me wrong, I do suggest you read the series, but maybe pick and choose which to read.  I highly suggest the 1st and 2nd books in the series.  In The Face of Deception, you get introduced to the main characters for the first time.  In this book, John Logan, billionaire extraordinaire, takes Eve on the conspiracy ride of her life.  There is a political cover-up and only Eve's expertise can solve the mystery.  But can she survive all the dangers that Logan puts her in front of?  Logan, who is by far my favorite character, is an ass, to sum it up.  He pushes and pulls everyone in his life using his money and political power to get what he wants.  But has he met his match in Eve?  Then enters Joe, Eve's "protector" or want to be "lover", who just happens to be the FBI agent that worked the Bonnie case.  No matter what in the end, Logan wants Eve all to himself and out of Joe's hands.  The twists and turns in this novel kept me on my toes.  I couldn't put it down!!  It made me very eager to move onto book 2, The Killing Game.  This novel starts off where the 1st ends with Logan, Eve, and Joe in this love triangle.  Or is it a triangle because Eve has no idea anyone is in love with her.  As far as she is concerned everyone is just a good "friend".  Eve can't handle much more than that, and to be honest, doesn't want to.  But this time Joe might have the advantage.  He has discovered a set of child's remains that could be Bonnie. As they set off discover the identity of the remains the bones get stolen.  The thief, the real killer, promises that the bones are Bonnie's and starts sending them back to Eve piece by piece.  Eve must now play this serial killer's mind games in order to get her daughter back.  But is it really her daughter?  And can Eve handle this game without breaking? This novel probes further into what makes Eve tick and her real relationship with Joe.  It introduces two more pivotal characters that stay throughout the series.  It really was a page turner.

To sum it all up, I enjoyed these first two books.  I just felt by the end of the second that I had closure for the characters, except where was Bonnie.  So I read on.  The third book is not about Eve, but about Logan and Sarah, so I skipped it.  I do intend to go back and read it because I love Logan.  The fourth book was the continuance of the story I wanted to see, but it felt repetitive right from the start, so I didn't finish it. Eve feels betrayed, searches for Bonnie, gets caught up in conspiracy and needs Joe to save her. Same old, same old. It is my suggestion that you read the first two books and skip around to the other books that spark your interest.  I would suggest you read the filler books because they fill us in on the lives of the sub-characters from the series.  This series goes on and on with the plot, so choose carefully in order to not get bored.


1 comment:

  1. I agree with your review. I have ready several of these books with Eve and crew. I have moved on to other authors and may go back to them.
    (Sorry, this is Sharon but it will say Mom until I can figure how to change!)