Monday, January 16, 2017

When this thing blows you'll just be rubble: FATAL.

FatalFatal by John Lescroart

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Kate and her husband Ron, have a seemingly perfect life: happily married, two kids, etc. So Kate is thrown off by her attraction to another man, Peter Ash, when she meets him at a dinner party held by one of Ron's colleagues and his own wife. Peter himself is married, with twin sons. Unable to get Peter out her mind, Kate ignores the warnings of her friend Beth, and arranges an encounter. Shortly after that event, Kate and Beth are involved in a horrific terrorist attack, and it seems like nothing will ever be the same.

This was a slightly bizarre novel with an interesting premise: a sort of anti-adultery treatise, in a way. The novel confounded me slightly with its two different tracks: one of personal angst and murder (I don't think it's a spoiler to state that shortly after the terrorist attack, Peter Ash winds up murdered) and then the terrorist attack, which seems somewhat oddly inserted into the novel's plot. Kate's friend Beth is a police detective, and for me, Beth was driving force of the book (and seriously, practically the only sane person in this story). I enjoyed her character and while it's been noted that this was a standalone novel for Lescroart, I could see another book featuring her.

Beth is perplexed as she tries to solve Peter Ash's murder. For us: not really. I felt as if the suspect was fairly easily identifiable the whole time. Lescroart did a fairly good job as casting suspicions on someone else; at one point, I finally thought, oh, ok, maybe I really am wrong (but I wasn't). There's a whole host of characters in the novel and they are interesting, but not really as complex or intricate as Beth. Overall, I enjoyed this novel-- I haven't read anything by Lescroart since some of his early Dismas Hardy books ages ago-- but I didn't find it to have an amazing "wow" factor or anything. It was an interesting, if somewhat predictable thriller, with some strange plot points thrown in.

I received a copy of this novel from Netgalley and the publisher (thank you!) in return for an unbiased review; it is available everywhere as of 01/24/2017.

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