Sunday, May 18

Trace Evidence - Elizabeth Becka

When forensic scientist Evelyn James examines the body of a young girl fished out of Cleveland's Cyahoga River she's horrified - the poor girl, clad only in skimpy shorts and a long-sleeved shirt despite the biting cold of winter, is bound in chains that extend into the buckets of concrete that encase her feet. It doesn't take long for Evelyn to discover the body of another victim of Ohio's latest serial killer, a young girl connected with Evelyn herself.
This is Patricia Cornwell light, minus most of the pathology detail - a strong female protagonist, a younger and more vulnerable female, heavy on the thriller elements, a tracing of romance or romantic interest, and involvement of the main character as a player in the action rather than just an involved professional. I could almost feel a checklist being ticked off with the introduction of each new element. I found the writing style irritating, though I can't pinpoint precisely what it was that made is sound (to my inner ear) leaden and forced.
I borrowed Trace Evidence (a relevant piece of trace, a thread of green synthetic material, helps Evelyn identify the killer) because Becka's latest novel was on the new books display at my local library and it looked interesting. Not so much now - I think I'll pass. - Alex

No comments: