Friday, January 18, 2013

Reviews of "Unleashed" and "Death in the Dark" [4-5]

Unleashed: A Sydney Rye Novel by Emily Kimelman
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform,
ISBN 978-1463581978
September 26, 2011, 340 pages

Once again, Joy Humbolt finds herself losing a boyfriend and out of a job, unsure what direction her life should take. That is sort of the way Joy rolls...
So when a neighbor tells her about a dog walking business that is up for sale, she jumps on the opportunity. Minimal contact with her employers, no co-workers to get along with, well, except the canine ones. But things get off to a very rocky start, when the husband of one of her clients turns up dead and Joy is the one that finds his body.
Then it gets even worse when Charlene Miller, the woman she bought the business from, disappears and shortly thereafter becomes suspect number one. But worse, much worse is just around the corner.

Joy starts to look into things, at first just out of curiosity and having a bit too much time on her hands, but very quickly things turn very dangerous and she is sucked into something she never saw coming. It seems that the people in the dead man's circle, some of the elite of Manhattan's rich, famous and powerful, do not want their secrets uncovered..and will not stop at killing to accomplish it.

Which explains why Joy Humbolt must disappear and Sydney Rye is born. But at least she will not be alone. No, she now has her giant rescued dog, Blue and the unlikely help of the rather crusty Detective Mulberry.

Death in the Dark: A Sydney Rye Novella by Emily Kimelman
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform,
ISBN 978-1480177680
November 29, 2012, 104 pages

This is the second book in the series, taking up when Sydney/Joy and her new partner in crime..crime investigation that is...Mulberry, flee NYC and make off for Mexico. With Blue too of course!
It seems that Sydney has plans to become a private investigator but in Mulberry's opinion she has a lot of work to do to get ready first. Enter one very interesting expert trainer, an old friend of Mulberry, and a man with an interesting past and present.

But Sydney get more than a little distracted when the sister of a new friend is killed and is determined that those responsible must be found and made to pay. Sydney is more than a little bit about the vengeance since what happened to her in the Big spoilers...and may well be getting herself into something she is not yet quite up to handling. Thank goodness for friends!!

Quite honestly, I rarely accept books that are offered directly from an author, an author I do not know. I have had more than one bad experience that way.
But these had a dog walker...and a dog as one of the main characters! They must be good!
Happily they are!

They are very well written, well plotted and have some good characters. Perhaps Blue, yes, the dog, is my favorite, with Mulberry close behind. I will hold off a bit on my opinion of Sydney. I started by liking her a lot. She is a bit aimless, drinks a bit too much and has a bad attitude. Perfect!
But when things so badly..and they do...and she gets very angry...rightfully so...but she also does something that breaks one of my cardinal rules. She starts to do some stupid things. And I hate stupid.

But as I said, I will hold off on making up my mind quite yet. Sydney is a work in progress, so I will cut her a little slack and see how things develop in the next book, that was published in December.
As I have said before, the fact that I am interested in reading the next one gives away my opinion of the series so far. If I did not like the first two, I would not be looking forward to the next! And I am.
Entertaining stories, well done, with some good characters...a reader can't ask for more.

Well, maybe except for better covers.
Sorry, don't like those covers.
But not a deal


  1. the dog angle. But I can't tolerate stupidity for long. I'm holding out judgement before I try these. If people can't learn from their mistakes, then they deserve to be nabbed by a bad guy.

  2. I get tired of a character when they keep doing the same stupid things over and over again (a la Stephanie Plum) but this sounds like the promising start to a series.

  3. Wow, the covers are striking, to say the least!

  4. I do like dogs, might have to try this then.

    1. I am a sucker for a great doggie character.

  5. sounds interesting .. and way it doesn't sound like is that the second book is a re-working of the first .. that was/is my complaint about the Dexter books


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