Determined to leave her old life behind, retired assassin Leine Basso accepts a job working security at one of television's most popular reality shows, Serial Date. When a contestant is found dead in the prop closet, it appears the killer is one of the 'bachelors' on the show - an ex-con billed as a serial killer - but the detective in charge of the case isn't so sure.
When Leine's estranged daughter is abducted by a man claiming to be the real killer, she's forced to rely on old skills to find her, and must come to terms with who she really is. She soon realizes the murderer may be a grisly remnant from her past and she'll need to use all of her cunning to stop him...and rescue her daughter.
©2012 D. V. Berkom (P)2013 D. V. Berkom
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"Great Satirical Suspense Novel"
The audio quality was very high, and the fast paced story was suspenseful and satirical at the same time.
Absolutely. The combination of action, personal stakes, and just the right amount of romantic interest really held my attention. I loved the sardonic humor.
The narrator enunciated very clearly, his voice was moderated well and his expressiveness was entertaining but not distracting.
Yes, I almost looked forward to my 40 minute commute!
I can't wait for the next audio book by DV Berkom!
"Great Action with a Dark Sense of Humor"
Yes! The story keeps up the pace from the beginning to the end. With this countries strange obsession with reality TV shows, why not take it one step more! Creepy with laugh out loud moments. I love Leine, she is a kick butt character.
Dave Barry or Carl Hiaasen's Sick Puppy (one of my favorite books) DV Berkom has the same fast pace and wacky characters that keep you listening.
No, I haven't. It takes about 10 minutes for him to really take off with the characters and get into their heads.
Both, which is great. DV really fleshes out her characters to make them come alive in the eyes of the listener. Even sub characters you develop a love/hate relationship with them.
I can't wait to hear more audiobooks in this series from DV Berkom.
"Realty Show Nightmare"
Yes, the plot is so unusual yet believable, which makes it both intriguing and a bit scary. The possibility of this type of show eventually turning up are incorporated well into the story. It resembles Hunger Games in that way.
The climactic end with the police detective, Santa fighting to get to Leine in time to save her life. And also, the many moments between the two as their relationship grew.
I enjoy the way he brought the characters to life. The reader has a certain vision but the "hear" the characters speak in a way that sounds right to the ear is especially fun.
Serial Date is fast paced with an interesting cast of characters. I look forward to reading the rest of the series.
"Just when you think you have it figured out..."
I think both versions are great!
The storyline of Serial Date is outstanding. Just when you think you have it figured out DV Berkom throws you another curve! This book will grab you from the start. Leine Basso is up to her neck in murder and betrayals in her professional life, and the sudden return of her teenage daughter and her antics in her personal life. The plot thickens as Basso's professional and personal life begin to meld into one.
I highly recommend Serial Date, Berkom has another hit.
This is the first.
"Great gritty suspense"
What a wonderfully engaging surprise this book was. Well written perfectly paced mystery. Leine is a real kick a$$ chick!! Plenty of wonderful twists to keep you on your toes. I love the book from beginning to end!! High suspense!!I would love to read more from this author!
The book is fast paced with a mixed narrative coming from several POV. Mostly it comes from Leine, who has a whole different sort of perspective! She is a tough as nails kind of gal, which is awesome!!! She really has a lot to work out from her past and the details of that past are handed out piece mail throughout the story. I really hoped for more info sooner.
The supporting cast is really great. A yummy homicide cop, a snarky daughter and a crazy serial killer. There are several dramas going on here other than the main plot, it is tricky to follow which intrigue is happening. lots of possible suspects along the way as well. It gets to be a bit much every now and again.
There is a bit of smexy action that is definitely open bedroom door!! Not full on erotic romance detail, but enough to get a gal hot 'n bothered. I could have done with a bit more of that action. It is a little early for the feeling though.
I would have liked more about this reality show. It has serious potential for chaos. There was also so much going on with Pete and the Senator. That probably could have been tabled to another book. It was distracting from the main plot of the serial killer. More with his crazy thought process and a bit of show on the taking/killing of the girls. It was pretty much all tell and no show.
I listened to the audiobook narrated by James Killavey, who I heard in other books. I enjoyed his read, but his bad guys sound very similar. Great pace that keeps the movement of the story, especially at points where things are slower. While I did not hate this read, it wasn't my favorite.
Overall, this was a great read and I am eager to see what happens next in the series. There is a whole lot of potential here. I can not wait to see how everything pans out in the next book.
Disclosure - I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.
Good strong woman
For a man, he did a surprisingly good job with Leine..and the many other characters.
Excellent book..hope it's just the first of a series.
"Well-written but distasteful thriller"
Our protagonist is Leine Basso, former professional assassin.
The story is centered around a tv reality show, Serial Date, in which the pretty, young contestants are vying to become True Love of one of the shows "serial killer" hot guys. Of course, the men aren't really serial killers, because that would be way too dangerous and we can presume the insurance company nixed that. However, the young women don't know that until after they've signed the non-disclosure agreement, so we can take it as a given that they have neither standards nor any sense of self-preservation.
And of course a real serial killer is stalking the show.
Leine, now retired from the paid assassin business, is hired on as additional security after the first killing. She's called in by the current head security guy, Gene, whom she has worked with in the past. This was apparently in her later life as an insurance investigator, though are reasons why this seems unlikely, given facts revealed later.
We are supposed to like Leine, and understand that she was a professional assassin for good reasons. We are supposed to sympathize with her because her daughter, April, hasn't spoken to her in years, after she found out her mom was a professional killer, and one of her targets turned out to be someone they knew and liked. For some reason, April isn't interested in her mom's "explanation" of this...
But, in all honesty, Leine is hardly the worst character in the book. There's the real serial killer, of course, who hates actors, and really hates that Serial Date obviously isn't using real serial killers and isn't even accepting his helpful advice (via anonymous letters) on how to make them at least seem more realistic. Oh, and he's a cannibal. There's Senator Runyon, who is a major backer of the show for utterly cynical reasons, and is into barely-legal young women, and bestiality.. There's Peter, whose last name I can't remember, the show's producer, who is a great deal more concerned about how the killings will affect the show than about the young women being killed.
I suppose in fairness I should mention police detective Santiago Jensen, a good cop and a good detective, whose worst fault is that he's been very shallow in his relationships with women until now.
But really, there is no part of this story that is not sordid and distasteful. It's well-written. The characters are well-developed; they're just not people I wanted to spend this much time with. The plot is well-paced, and if there are a couple of continuity errors, it's nothing so big that I wouldn't easily forgive it in a book I liked better. My real objection is just how grim, sordid, distasteful this story and these characters are, and the fact that we're supposed to like Leine and sympathize with her over her daughter's very sensible rejection of her. In the fantasy genre, I'd call this "grimdark," and I think that term applies here, too.
But if you like dark, gritty, sordid thrillers, you'll probably like this.
I received a free copy of this audiobook, and I am reviewing it voluntarily.
"Longest Newscast EVER!!"
The story was interesting I can't fault the author, but the narrator had the most boring, least inflective, droning voice it has ever been my displeasure to listen to.
I made it through the sex scene delivered with such dispassion one would think they were attending a medical lecture - in 1900.
I continued past that but when I notice myself not listening and checking to see how much more of the book was left to take, I gave up.
I've listened to wrong narrators deliver stories, but in 15 years of listening to audiobooks I have to say this is THE worst narrated book I've had to ask my money back for.
I could not get interested in this book till the 9th chapter. I did not enjoy this book and only finished reading it because I paid for the audio portion. Spend your time on a better read.
"The most painful audiobook I've heard"
Written in Avery weak writing voice. The narrator wasn't able to distinguish character tone differences.
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