Retired homicide detective Linda Sikorsky and her wife Kirsten McClellan head to Maine from their home in the New Jersey woods for a weekend of rest, relaxation and rewrites as Kirsten finishes drafting her first novel. Bad weather alters their plans, forcing them to stop for the night at the Cliff's Edge, a roadside motel known for secrecy and indiscretion. Something murderous goes bump in the night, sending the women on a search for justice when a young reporter's body is found violated and dumped on a back road. A road Linda must now go down, no matter where it takes her, or what it reveals.
©2016 Mark McNease (P)2017 Mark McNease
Linda (always known as Detective Linda by her friends, Kyle and Danny) and her wanna-be author wife, Kirsten, are forced by a major storm to take overnight shelter in a somewhat seedy small town hotel whilst en route to an holiday of hotel luxury.. Awake in the night, Linda hears muffled noises from the room next door followed by the sound of a car leaving. Intrigued that anyone would be driving away at that time of morning, she notices that the Golden(ish) car which had been parked next to theirs is missing, later to be found abandoned with the body of a young female journalist nearbye. Detective Linda's ex-police mental radar goes into overdrive as she drags her reluctant partner on a trail of discovery and danger rather than the relaxed holiday she had been anticipating.
More of a standard mystery thriller than the Pride series books (how I miss the lovely Danny and Kyle), Mark McNease has written an intriguing crime story peopled with colourful characters. Linda always has been a great personality and it is good to be able to get to know both her and her new wife better through this book and experience the closeness of the couple despite their obvious differences. His characters are always real people, not cyphers on a page. Like absent friends rather than imaginary ones.
The narration by Daniela Acitelli is good, clear and well paced (although I had to increase the audio speed to 1.25 for it to be comfortable to hear as I found her reading, at the regular speed, too long drawn out). She also voices the characters well, giving them even greater credibility. Overall, a good performance.
This was an enjoyable listen and I can recommend it to all mystery lovers and, if you are still unfamiliar with the companion Pride series, suggest you treat yourself to the pleasure of discovering new friends in those titles, also.
The thing I loved most about 'Last Room at the Cliff's Edge' was that this book was filled with female characters who range from flighty and silly to sinister and badass. So many stories are sorely lacking in female characters that have depth and actual human characteristics. As far as diversity in gender goes, this book is fantastic.
The story itself was also a great listen. From interpersonal strife between wives to a full fledge murder mystery, this tale has a little bit of everything! This is a tight and interesting murder mystery that I would definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys a good thriller! Mark McNease spins this tale with expertise and Daniela Acitelli delivers a fabulous performance.
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.
"Story & Writing, Fine -- Narrator, not so much"
Maybe read the author, but not the narrator.
I couldn't get to the end.
Yes, stop listening, start reading, instead.
The narrator has a very odd rhythm to her reading. She tends to draw out a word here and there in a way that does not fit the narrative or the dialogue. She also gets the emphasis on the wrong word. It gets annoying. Example: (Not verbatim) I knoooowww he is the one, instead of the correct interpretation putting the emphasis on "he."
"Nice introduction to a new series"
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.
This was an enjoyable mystery story. I am partial to books taking place in New England because I am familiar with the area. I thought the lead characters were almost the odd couple in the beginning of the story, but as it progressed they seemed like a more plausible match. Fun for a car ride.
"Last Room at the Cliff's Edge"
Last Room at the Cliff's Edge: Detective Linda Mysteries, Book 1
: Mark McNease
I've listened to Mark McNease's Kyle Callahan series and was introduced to Detective Linda in them. This new series features her and her wife, a budding writer. A storm causes them to have to stay at a motel on their way to a writers retreat. This is where the story begins and takes you on a roller coaster ride.
The narration was well done.The characters were well portrayed. Daniela Acitelli sometimes goes over the top, but it's not too bad.
"I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator."
"Solid mystery story"
Yes. It was quite interesting and the dynamics of Linda and Kirsten's relationship is cute and entertaining throughout. It is a well structured plot and there is action as well as mystery. There are a great number of quirky characters to add to the story as well. This is a small town mystery full of varied participants that have a long history. A history full of unsolved disappearances and deaths that are whispered about only. When detective Linda and her mate happen into town and into the mystery events conspire to snag them into it all. It was a great listen.
This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review
"Not what I was expecting."
This book was not what I was expecting. It is a mystery that is featuring lesbians. The mystery aspect of the book was good. I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, narrator, and/or publisher.
"Excellent story and narrator!"
What starts out as a road trip to get away and have some time together while Kristen works on her first mystery novel turns into the real thing when a storm strands them overnight. You can take the detective out of law enforcement, but you can't take law enforcement out of Detective Linda. Very engrossing, yet not overlong.
Ms Acitelli gives an excellent audio interpretation!
Don't miss this one!
"Very Good First Book in a McNease Spinoff Series"
I had the pleasure of reading and reviewing the Kindle version of this book back in September 2016. Here's what I wrote then:
"If you're familiar with Mark McNease's Kyle Callahan series, Detective Linda will be familiar to you... ...a stand alone book."
"... this is a great beginning and in my opinion a natural progression for a fantastic character. It is darker, there are some some evil perpetrators and some horrible crimes. The plot is as developed as other works by Mark. I'm looking forward to more in the Detective Linda series..."
The effort translates well to audio.
The Kyle Calahan series also by Mark McNease.
I've listened to other titles utilizing Daniela Acitelli. Another in the McNease library and several unrelated titles. I knocked off stars for this performance. I felt some of her performance involved far reaches with odd cadence. I enjoy her voice and skill during story narrative. Pleasant to listen to. I made similar comment on her other Audible collaborations. Dialogue, there are issues, for me an anyway.
My preference is narrators stay with more natural speech, less "gimmicky".
I enjoy the Kyle Calahan series. I felt Detective Linda would fantastic for Mark to write about.
Despite my criticisms, this is still a fantastic listen. Well worth the Audible Credit. Looking forward to more Detective Linda entertainment!
Thanks for the opportunity to review it!This review copy audiobook was provided by the author at no cost. Thank you, Mark McNease! Which I can only assume was voluntary on their part. I am happy to give my honest review of it. I think I'm suppose to mention how reviewing this was voluntary on my part too.
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