Review–Eeny Meeny by M.J. Alridge (Helen Grace Book #1)

This book was a great thriller with some interesting and exciting characters. Detective Helen Grace is a hard-edged female detective in a British town. She has an excellent track record and runs her team with a strong but caring hand. She’s put in charge of a case where two people were kidnapped and forced to make the ultimate decision–one dies so the other can live. The case baffles the team as the killer appears to leave no clues behind, aside from her gender. When two more people go missing, the team can’t believe it… a female serial killer? Then Helen finds a shocking connection between all the cases. Can they solve the mystery before more people go missing?

This is a quickly paced mystery thriller. There is a fair amount of action, as well as some pretty grotesque moments when the victims are in captivity. The story is told primarily from Helen’s third person perspective but also includes some narrative from the victims and two of Helen’s team members. There was a good emotional connection with the characters that kept me engaged. I felt that their worlds were built up fairly well outside the squad room which allowed me to feel invested in the characters and their outcomes. I had only two complaints. The first was the pacing of the story. At times it seemed not even 24 hours had passed since a kidnapping from the investigation side, yet the victims were in captivity for days at a time. The story seemed like it took place in a week, maybe two, yet based on the number of victims and time spent in captivity it was more likely several weeks or maybe a couple of months. I think the story would have benefited greatly by having chapter headings with dates on it to help orient the reader to the timeline. Second was more of a slight plot fail–some of the victims were kept in captivity with no food or water for several days and, in one case, 2-3 weeks yet were discharged home from the hospital within 24 hours. They were described as being gaunt, malnourished, etc. so what hospital would send them home so quickly (or at least that’s how it was presented).

Overall, however, I genuinely enjoyed this thriller and would likely read more from this author again.

I received this book for free from Netgalley