Cover for Deadly Focus

The First Ten Focus Group Feedback for Deadly Focus: A Vega & Middleton Novel

Because Deadly Focus was Book of the Day, some of our most trusted members have carefully looked over the cover, the description, and other aspects of this book as a part of purchase-intent focus group. We then asked each participant in the focus group if they planned to buy and read the book, and why they planned to buy and read the book or not. Their answer to that question and reasons are displayed below. We call this awesome feature The First Ten Focus Group.

Keep in mind, the responses from the members are not reviews. This is purchase-intent focus group which means the participants are people who have NOT yet bought or read your book. A purchase-intent focus group is an important and extremely useful marketing tool for any product, not just books. For other products, you might walk on the street and show people an item in a package and poll them about whether they would buy if or $X or not. These kind of focus groups are one of the ways big marketing companies find the ideal price points for products and test the effectiveness of different packaging. The focus group can help you identify your market so you how to target ads of your book, and it can (but may not) provide you new useful info about your "packaging" (e.g. your book cover, your book synopsis on Amazon, etc.). The point of the focus group comments is to give you information from people who have not bought or read your book about why they plan to buy your book which will help you in marketing the book. These are not reviews or critiques of your book because they are not from people have read the book. This is a marketing tool, not reviews. The trick of book marketing and book advertising is that you have to convince people who have not read your book yet that your book is worth buying and reading. For marketing, it doesn't matter much if people love your book after reading it if you cannot convince potential buyers before they read it that they will love it.

IMPORTANT: Any score over 10% is considered very good. And any score above 0% is acceptable. This is because we only poll about 20 or so readers, and all readers have to say "no" to almost all books. Over a million books are published each year. Even a very active reader cannot come close to even reading 1% of books out there.

This is also why publishing books is such a tough industry.


Without this program, I would not have sampled this read. The cover and title are fine, but I don't tend to enjoy books in the "women's sleuths" genre. The positive customer reviews are good to see, but they don't sway my opinion of the book. On the other hand, the OBC review did make me question if this book would be for me as I don't enjoy reading graphic violent and child sexual abuse scenes. Reading the blurb gives a good idea what the book will about, but personally, I also don't enjoy reading about Mexican cartels. I would suggest in not adding the amount of praise in the blurb since it makes the blurb too lengthy. Based on what I read, the book does seem to be edited well. The opening scene of Gary Mercer on the ledge of a building, ready to jump off was very exciting. This, of course, would capture many readers' attention. It was also exciting when Gary admitted to Lucy about his childhood abuse and how he killed his mother. The first chapter was quite the doozy! However, I didn't find the second intriguing enough to keep my attention as Mercer and Alvarez are conversing. Due to this, and the graphic scenes mentioned earlier, I do not plan on finishing the rest of the book.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 7:30 am by hsimone.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Bianka Walter

Judging by the cover and title, this is a book that I would usually read. I love a murder mystery involving a strong female protagonist - which Lucy surely is. The first chapter of this book was enthralling, and it told me a lot about who Lucy is, and what type of character she will portray. I held my breath for a bit of the narrative wondering what was going to happen next. And that is immediately a sign of a great book. The sample was well edited with no discernable errors. The OBC review was full of praise, which only solidifies my decision to want to read on. This is definitely a book that is right up my alley, and I would love to read further.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 5:59 am by Bianka Walter.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!

JR Mercier

After reading the first ten pages of Deadly Focus, I was left muttering 'damn' under my breath. The writing is brilliant. It invokes a dark and gritty atmosphere that reminds me of old Hollywood crime films. The author's descriptions are perfect at creating an image of a dark and raw Hollywood. Deadly Focus also starts off with a major bang and I can't wait to get back to the book.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 5:30 am by JR Mercier.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I wouldn't have chosen to sample this book on the basis of the genre or description because I already have a long reading list and am not looking for new fiction. I won't read the rest of it on the basis of the first ten pages because of gory and raw descriptions of violence - that's not really my cup of tea. I noticed the error "the cop's". I liked Lucy's strong character best, and the descriptions of the decayed glamour of the Hollywood hotel. In terms of what could be improved, the descriptions of the men Lucy encountered erred on the side of being negative stereotypes. I did see an OnlineBookClub review.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 4:12 am by ButterscotchCherrie.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I had no interest in reading this book, primarily due to its genre. I don’t typically enjoy novels like these and the sample only affirmed my position. The characters felt too unrealistic, though I will give the book credit as it does seem to be well written and professionally edited.

I wound be finishing this one. I wasn’t fond of the initial scenes and the suicide rescue. The main character did not act professionally as I would’ve expected from her job and was really quite useless during the whole encounter and I feel as though the author could put in a bit more effort there.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 3:33 am by SPasciuti.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I would have sampled this book based on the genre, blurb and OBC review. It seemed like an interesting thriller. After reading the first ten pages, I will be finishing this book. I was hooked from the moment they said a man was about to jump off the ledge. Once Lucy found out it was her coworker and tried to talk him out of it, I couldn't stop reading. I love when I become interested in a book right away because the book starts with an interesting event. There wasn't anything I disliked. I did notice one error at the beginning in which "cops" had an apostrophe when it shouldn't have. It seemed edited other than that.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 2:19 am by anneloretrujillo.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I saw that there was an official review of the book but I did not get a chance to read it. I was excited about the book based on the blurb I read about it though. After reading the first ten pages I am a bit more torn about how excited I am to read it. I found two errors (or possibly one of them is not an error but it makes the sentence flow very strangely so if I was editing the book I would change it). That is a lot in my opinion for ten pages, especially when those are the pages that should be making a really good impression. That being said, I did like the writing for the most part. The imagery was really great, even the "touch" sense. For this reason, I will look past the errors and continue to read it!

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 2:12 am by britt13.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I wouldn't have sampled the book despite good reviews because there's nothing original in the premise. The description made the book sound like a ton of others, so I only sampled it for this program. The sample was bland, unimaginative and extremely boring for a suspense/thriller novel. As we only judge the first ten pages, it's important for the author to try to do its best to hook the reader straight from the beginning. As for the characters, Luce was quite an annoying stereotypical protagonist, so I really didn't enjoy the book. The only good thing is that it seemed edited. I won't be reading the rest.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 1:54 am by IsabelMay.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


The reviews that I had read about the book did not convince me that it is a good read. The first ten pages did. I have the book and I will read it to the end because I like the aspect of a strong female protagonist. The pages I read had no errors and I believe it was professionally edited. For me, character development is key when choosing a book and the author has done a good job in this aspect. The book has an Official OnlineBookClub review.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 1:34 am by Jgideon.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


The cover of this one had me a bit unsure of what to expect, and I'm not sure whether I would've looked more into it if it wasn't the book of the day. After reading the Amazon description it makes sense with the reporter/photography angle in the book!

I did notice a single error, but overall it seemed professionally edited - it was just the use of "cop's" instead of "cops". There were several fantastic quotes already just in the first chapter, but the end of the chapter was rather dark and creepy. Even though this book was free, I don't think I'll be finishing it, I'm not a fan of dark stories and I'm not at all hooked yet.

First Ten review added on June 17, 2018, at 12:31 am by CataclysmicKnight.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


The cover has a bold design which is very appropriate for a thriller, especially considering what the blurb poses. The official review mentions a good work of characterization both in the female protagonist and in the secondary characters. The first ten pages introduce the protagonist and her work environment in a very effective way. The prose is fluid and quite appropriate for the genre and the editing work looks acceptable since I did not find grammatical errors or typos. To be honest, both the genre and the premise are of my preference, and although I had some doubts, taking into account the official review, I think I'll give this book a chance. I will continue reading it.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 9:23 pm by KRay93.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


Based on the blurb and OnlineBookClub review, this book seemed somewhat interesting, but not enough to make me want to read it. However, the first ten pages convinced me to give it a shot. The author throws us right into the action, as Lucy discovers a work colleague about to throw himself off a rooftop, and attempts to talk him down. The pacing is fantastic, and it really sets up the rest of the novel excellently. The only grammar error I noticed was a comma in the middle of the phrase "no shit". I will definitely be checking out the rest of this book.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 9:13 pm by meadhbh.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


This is a book I would have normally read. I enjoy thrillers. After reading the sample, my opinion is the same. I enjoyed the tense setup of the suicide situation in the beginning. It definitely caught my attention. There is nothing that stood out to me as needing improvement. It seems to be professionally edited.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 7:35 pm by RebeccasReading.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


If I had not read the sample I would not have read the book. I feel like the blurb seemed too much like a timeline, and I think it could be improved by making the story sound more anticipatory. After reading the sample I have not changed my mind. I think the writing style was authentic in dialogue, but it became a little tedious during the paragraphs where there was a lot of unneeded description and purple prose. It was professionally edited. I think the book could be improved if there was more balance between description and dialogue regularly, instead of bouncing back and forth at extremes. I did not read the official review but that did not affect my decision.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 6:48 pm by psychopathycathy.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


At first glance, I am not drawn to this book. The cover looks pretty standard, and the title is not unique to me. I feel like I have seen it before. The blurb for this book is good, and so are the reviews, so I might consider giving it a chance. Before the first 10 pages, however, I would not have chosen to read it. Even from the first ten pages, it just doesn't feel unique to me, and I would not pursue reading it any further. At first glance, I also noticed a couple errors. One of these was in the first sentence: "At four in the morning on December twenty-first, the winter, equinox, the graveyard shift was taking its toll." This commas here make the sentence a bit confusing, and I think hyphens would make the meaning more clear. I do think the first ten pages offer a good amount of suspense, and that is a positive, but I would like to see a more interesting cover and title as well as a little more uniqueness right off the bad. I think this book has probably been edited, but probably not by a professional.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 3:59 pm by JuliaKay.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I love the cover of this book! As soon as I saw it, I knew instantly the book is a crime fiction novel or at least a thriller or mystery novel. I was delighted to find out from the official OBC review that it is all three. I enjoyed reading the first ten pages. I like that the book jumps into action at the very start. It left me wanting more. I also didn't notice any major grammatical or spelling errors. My only issue with the book is that there seems to be a lot of cussing, which I don't enjoy in a novel.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 2:59 pm by Ever_Reading.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


After reading the blurb, I think I would pick this book and check it out because I am a huge fan of thrillers and mysteries and I love the fact that the main protagonist is a strong female character. After reading the first ten pages, I didn't see any spelling or grammar errors. I really like the action-packed start to the book with Lucy trying to save her coworker Gary from jumping off the ledge. I also felt very scared for her and angry when Gary smashed through the window with her and told her about his past and killing his mom and threatening Lucy when she said she wouldn't keep it a secret. I would love to read the rest of this book one day, but I can't right now due to lack of time. But I would love to read it in the future.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 2:45 pm by CrescentMoon.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Vickie Noel

I'm somewhat indifferent about this book. I probably wouldn't have picked it up outside the program; it doesn't catch my eye. After reading the sample, I'm still not sure where I stand. I don't hate it, yet it's not knocking me out either. The intro was supposed to be fast-paced, what with the attempted suicide of Mercer, but I wasn't really feeling the action with Lucy. The whole gig seemed too forced to me. Maybe it gets better. Still, I'm not sticking around to find out. It was well edited because I didn't find any errors and thus, have no recommendations for improvement. I did like the Spanish remarks interjected into Mercer's and Alvarez's conversation though. The OBC review got me all revved up for this book but I'm afraid my interest is a tad deflated. I may peep into it again sometime in the future.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 2:10 pm by Vickie Noel.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Deadly Focus is a title that immediately makes me think the book might be too intense for me. The review pretty much backed up that guess. The first 10 pages were definitely over the top for me. Starting off with a near suicide scene that left me feeling emotionally drained isn’t a good way to open a book in my opinion, but readers of a different personality may like it. I didn’t find any errors, but this one isn’t for me.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 11:50 am by DancingLady.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Prior to sampling the book, I wasn't very interested in it because the crime genre is not my "thing." They are usually too dark and gritty for me and I steer clear of graphic violence and the like. The plot does sound interesting enough, it's just not the kind of book I would want to read. The Amazon reviews, limited as they are, seem to be very positive, except for one that caught my eye, which pointed out that the author opened the book by calling December 21st the winter "equinox." That would be the winter solstice. Ouch. That makes me question whether the author bothers with fact-checking and research and doesn't bode well for the sample. Having sampled the book, I'm definitely not interested in finishing it. As I said, crime novels just don't generally appeal to me, with a few exceptions, and the frequent profanity that appears in the portion I read has definitely run me off. I anticipate from the sample to find other things that keep me away from a book, like graphic violence, for example. I downloaded the book because it's free, but I won't be finishing it eventually. The OBC official review was very positive, but not enough to make me want to finish this book and overlook the language and such. I don't want to be completely negative, so I will insert here that I didn't find any grammar/spelling/punctuation problems in the sample, so it appears to be professionally edited, which I always appreciate.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 8:43 am by SamSim.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Based on the cover and genre, I didn't think I would like this book. After reading the beginning, I know for sure. The beginning is all about a drugged up guy standing naked on a ledge about to jump because he thinks he can fly. This is not something I'm interested in reading about. I didn't find any editing mistakes.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 6:50 am by bb587.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


After reading the review and blurb for this novel, I was sold and wanted to buy and read the whole book. This was because the genre is a particular interest of mine i.e crime and mystery, therefore I have bought the whole book. When reading the sample, I loved the acknowledgements, however, I was disappointed that the chapters did not have titles to them. I personally prefer that they have titles rather than just being labelled, Chapter 1 etc. I enjoyed the tension and the suspense in the sample with regards to the man who was threatening to jump. I did not find any spelling errors in the sample and it seemed to have been professionally edited and formatted. The review of this novel was very positive, rating it 4 out of 4. This did have an impact on my choosing to buy the novel as they were so positive about the contents.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 4:45 am by N_R.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


Based solely on the book cover I would not have chosen to read, or sample, this book. It is well designed and obviously a murder/mystery, but I'm not normally drawn to the murder/mystery genre. I tend to figure out "who-done-it" too quickly to fully enjoy most of the story.

I was slightly swayed towards wanting to skim through the book after reading the various Amazon reviews and the OnlineBookClub review. They praised the character development, which is an important issue for me. They also stressed the fast pace and exciting storyline. The OnlineBookClub review mentioned some unexpected plot-twists, which piqued my interest a little. All the reviews I read were helpful in my having a more receptive mind towards the book before I began reading the First 10, but they were not convincing enough for me to want to make a purchase.

It was actually reading the First 10 that changed my mind completely. By page 10, I was already invested in the story. Sue Hinkin does an amazing job of creating a vivid picture right from the beginning. One that grabs ahold of you and doesn't let go. I may have found a murder/mystery author I can enjoy. Yes, after reading the first 10, I would purchase and read the book. I did not notice any grammar or punctuation errors.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 1:48 am by Tiny_Turtle.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I would not have chosen to sample this book apart from First Ten since I'm not typically interested in murder mysteries, a genre the cover reminded me of. The blurb was brief, simple, and yet informative - those are the best kind. After reading, I was more eager to sample Deadly Focus. The first ten pages left me conflicted. The plot was very engaging, and as a result, I found the first few pages engrossing. I lost track of the pages as I read. Although I liked the plot, I found the language a drawback. There were quite a few instances when the the main character, Lucy, or other characters cursed in just the first few pages. The official OBC review mentioned that there would be graphic violence scenes and instances of child abuse, and those are not things I want to delve into. Though this seems like a thrilling read, I don't consider myself the appropriate audience.

First Ten review added on June 16, 2018, at 12:16 am by ladycraic.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


The cover and the title together conveyed that this is a fiction. The Amazon summary provides the plot which is pretty interesting. Also, there are around 9 customer reviews with an overall average rating of 4.5 stars. So, I would have picked this book even if not for the First Ten program for a weekend read. As I sampled through the book, I figured that it is an entertaining thriller. I found Lucy's commandeering demeanor while saving Gary from the fall from the building pretty captivating, and I figured that her characterization would be of one tuff go-getter which would keep me engaged and interested in the story. So, I am going to read this book in full. I found the book professionally edited. I found one mechanical error in the first ten pages - "cops" is spelled "cop's". What I liked about the story is its thrilling narration. I could not find anything that could be improved in the book. I found one OBC review of the book, but my decision to read the book is based on my own sampling.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:00 pm by va2016.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I like Lucy, she has a serious personality, but seems realistic enough. I like how the author describes Truckee with a red beard and thick neck, he was easy to visualize. I find the drama with a suicidal Gary Mercer intriguing also and like the dynamic of the local news team. I don’t particularly enjoy some of the language and adult content, it’s too negative and not something I want exposure to. I don’t read thrillers, so this book is well-written, just not my cup of tea. I like the cover and title, it fits the vibe and Lucy’s profession as a local reporter. The editing looks good to me, but the review mentioned there are some errors. The book was more entertaining than I thought it would be, but there are still some minor turn-offs that apply to all books in this genre which abstain me from reading. I’m not keen on murder mysteries either, so it’s unlikely I would have found this book outside of this program.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 10:12 pm by Momiji1987.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Vermont Reviews

Deadly Focus Today's book of the day has the main character Lucy Vega. Whose uncle Henry who was working for the governor just had a terrible accident which took his life.

I did download the book based on review.

I would have read the preview based on the cover, title, And blurb

I will finish the book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 9:36 pm by Vermont Reviews.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


After reading a sample of, Deadly Focus by Sue Hinkin, I have decided that I will finish reading this book. When I first saw the cover for this book, I was on the fence concerning it. I am an avid fan of mystery/suspense novels but wasn't for sure this book would pique my interest. As I read the blurb for this book, I quickly found my interest piqued in the storyline. I wanted to know more about Lucy and the circumstances of the death of her uncle. As I read a few pages of this story, I quickly find myself pulled in. I like how the author starts the story off seemingly innocuous. Lucy and her partner are about ready to call it a night when the police scanner comes to life. My first thought is it's about the crash, but the author takes the story in a different route. I love it! I'm completely engaged in the story and eagerly reading more. If I had not read a sample of this book, I would have picked it up. This book does have an official OnlineBookClub review. The reviewer is engaging and further piques my interest in the story. I will be finishing this book when I am able. This book sounds like an excellently done mystery/suspense novel.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 8:10 pm by BunnySTx.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!

Kendra M Parker

I am not really in the market for another thriller or mystery right now, so I would not be looking for a book like this one. I’m impressed that it is up for some big awards, but I’m still not really looking for a book like this right now. When I read the official review, it sounded interesting, especially that it is the sort of book that can keep the attention going. When I read the first ten pages, I found the story of the jumper somewhat interesting, but I’m just not wanting a mystery or thriller right now. I did find an error on page 1 where "cops" has an unnecessary apostrophe. Otherwise, things seemed pretty clean grammatically. I liked that things were quick to get started, but it did not really grip me enough to make me want to put this on my to-read list right away.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 7:42 pm by Kendra M Parker.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I definitely would have picked this up even if it was not part of the First Ten program because the title and cover are intriguing and I have always been interested in cartels. The first ten pages were professionally edited. I liked the main female character's courage. The plot starts out with action, with a man on a ledge. I did not want to stop reading, so I definitely look forward to reading the rest.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 6:53 pm by Sarah_Khan.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


After reading the OBC review, I probably wouldn't have sampled this book on my own due to the mention of graphic violence and child sex abuse. The Amazon summary is free of errors and gives a good explanation of the plot. Unfortunately, I don't care for the topic of cartels. The begining pages ae also edited well, but I found it difficult to become absorbed in the story. The author does a good job of introducing Lucy, the main character, but the story was too gritty for my taste. Still, the scene with the man on the ledge threatening to jump was written well. Based on my reading preferences, I am going to take a pass on this one.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 6:24 pm by bookowlie.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Had I not actually sampled the first ten pages as part of this program, I would have chosen to read or sample this book based on the genre. I like thriller mysteries.
I am going to buy and read the whole book because the sample was good. The lead characters were interesting and I want to know what happens to the suicidal guy.
Based on what I read, the book seems like it was professionally edited. I didn't notice typo or grammar errors.
What I like the most in the bit I read is that the descriptions were vivid and cinematic.
What could be improved is nothing that I could think of.
The book has an Official OnlineBookClub review that I saw.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 6:16 pm by Izesicle.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


This is a great cover page which got my attention immediately. I enjoy crime and mystery, so this looked like a book that I would enjoy. The OnlineBookClub review was very complementary and outlined a story that I would be interested in. The plot twists, as well as the strong female character, made me want to read it straight away. The pages which I read were well written and edited and I had difficulty stopping after just ten. The scene with Gary attempting suicide then his drug induced murder confession makes for a brilliant start. I would like to continue reading this book and I have no ideas for improvement.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 5:59 pm by micoleon13.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


The title and cover are very well done. They clearly show the intent and style of the book. Personally, I feel it might be even better without the actual target on the cover. The Amazon blurb was good. It reflected the book well and added to my interest in this book. I don’t really like when all of the reviews/recommendations are in the blurb though. The OBC review was helpful and added more detail to my understanding of the book. Knowing that the book is lead by a strong female protagonist was a plus for me; knowing that she is reckless and that there are scenes of child abuse take away from my interest. The sample was well written. I did not notice any obvious typos or grammar errors. Starting off with someone about to jump off a building and then trying to kill our hero was an intense way to start the book. I am not sure I’m up for such an intense and violent book. Based on the blurb and OBC review, this only gets more intense as it goes along. This is not a genre I enjoy and so, although it seems well done, I do not plan to finish the rest of this book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 5:54 pm by Snowflake.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Kat Berg

I like mysteries and crime thrillers a lot. This one captured my interest right away with the reviews and the fantastic recommendations on Amazon. I do tend toward the cozy mystery more often than the gritty mystery, and this one is fully along the lines of the gritty. The coarse language and the child abuse found within the first ten pages do give me pause. I think a book is better when it limits this kind of thing, yet the author didn't go into graphic detail about the various instances of child sexual abuse and left it up to the imagination, which I appreciate, because I can choose not to go there. This is my least favorite part of the book. The story, however, is fast-paced and well-written, seems to be professionally edited, and despite some of my hesitations I am drawn into the storyline and plan to finish the book. It is a plus for me that there is an Audible version of the book, as that increases my likelihood of being able to read the book. (I spend a lot of time in my car.) I did read the official OBC review, which played a part in me wanting to read the story.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 4:21 pm by Kat Berg.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


The cover and title for "Deadly Focus" grabbed my attention right away, but then the Amazon synopsis let me down. OBC's review (the only one I read) decreased my interest further. I'm not interested in a book having to do with the Mexican cartel and taking place partially in Mexico. I'm not THAT interested in finding out what really happened to Lucy's uncle. With that being said, the sample read was okay. I was glad to see that it's professionally edited, and I have no suggestions for changes because it's written well. My favorite part was when Lucy was on the ledge with Gary, trying to keep him from jumping, and he said he wanted to fly. Even so, I will not finish reading this book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 3:56 pm by MsTri.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I immediately deduced that this book was a crime thriller from the title and cover design. The blurb confirmed this. I really dislike these type of mystery stories because many of them seem to follow similar plots and for some reason always include Latino or Spanish characters. If you read one, you’ve read all. Therefore, I would not have chosen this book to read because the story and characters are not fresh and unique. After reading the first the pages, I was not captivated. The book jumped straight into the action, without any backstory of the characters. I also did not like certain descriptions, such as, ‘a clot of hotel workers,’ because it made me think of blood clots. The book also contained quite a lot of profanities. Fortunately, the book seemed professionally edited and I did not see any noteworthy errors. Perhaps others who enjoy this genre of books will love this story, but it is not for me, so I would not continue reading it.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 3:23 pm by KristyKhem.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I would not have sampled this book without this program because I do not read much about crime and murder. The OBC review did not convince me to read this book. I do not want to read about a photojournalist investigating the strange death of her uncle. After I read the sample pages, I thought the book was professionally edited. The intense situation in which Lucy saved Gary only for him to try to strangle her was interesting. However, I will not read this book because I do not enjoy reading about murderers.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 3:06 pm by Yolimari.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I probably would have read Deadly Focus even if it had not been a part of The First Ten program. The Book of the Day review was very promising. The book seemed like it was professionally edited, but I noticed an error while reading. Crank was used instead of prank. I enjoyed the tension during the scene with Gary. I thought that I could have used a little bit more information about Gary and his relationship with Lucy. I probably will read the rest of the book because it seems action-packed so far.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 2:54 pm by lavellan.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I came across the OBC review a few weeks before it was BoTD and was absolutely convinced I need to read this book. I always enjoy a good murder mystery, and the OBC reviewer makes it sound like this is a thriller from start to finish. The sample gives the same impression. Right from the first page of chapter 1 the excitement begins. I like that Hinkin starts off right in the thick of things. I didn't notice any errors, and the writing in the sample is well done, fast paced, and exciting. I look forward to reading this book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 2:44 pm by kfwilson6.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


After reading the first ten pages, I decided to finish reading the book. The sample was pretty interesting and the first couple of pages hooked me into the story. I like to read thrillers so I knew that this book would interest me before I started reading the sample. I also like how the female protagonist, Lucy, is depicted as a strong character. I like that Lucy saved Gary, but it seems like Gary wasn't very appreciative of it. While reading the sample, I. I do like the book cover and title so if I were to sample the book based on just the cover and title, I probably would have chosen to sample it because they both look interesting. While reading the sample, I didn't notice any grammatical errors either. I also read the official OBC review for this book which was helpful in solidifying my decision on reading this book. There isn't anything I would change anything about this book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 1:36 pm by ZenaLei7.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


Without the first ten program, I would not have sampled Sue Hinkin's novel. I am glad I discovered it because I am a fan of mystery/crime fiction and thrillers. The title and cover are perhaps too commercial for my taste, but I like the description of the novel in the Amazon blurb. The editorial and customer reviews praise the novel for its gripping and suspenseful plot as well as for its vivid characterization. After reading the first chapter, I have decided not to continue reading. I appreciate Lucy's strength and determination. The novel is indeed action-packed and does not give you time to breathe. It took me by surprise more than once. I did not expect the suicidal man to be Gary Mercer, Lucy's colleague. What happens after she saves him is quite unexpected again. His confession that he was abused and finally killed his mother would have been enough for his gesture to look more credible. His attempt to kill Lucy is maybe too much for the opening chapter. There were no editing problems in the chapter I have read. However, what scares me is the plunge into a world of abuse and addictions. Considering that her future investigation will take her close to the Mexican cartels, I do not feel this is the right book for me now. Besides, the OBC review mentions some violent scenes and instances of children sexual abuse. I may be wrong, but I will put this book aside for the time being.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 1:35 pm by cristinaro.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


I would have definitely chosen to read this book based on the blurb and on the cover. I think this is one of the better-looking book covers I have seen, and it looks like it was professionally created. The blurb definitely makes me curious about the murder of Lucy's uncle, and how she and the CNN war correspondent that was mentioned in the blurb are going to solve this case.

I will definitely consider buying and reading the whole book. The first chapter of this book is perfectly written, in my opinion. It is well-paced, stopping the action for just long enough to get some information across to the reader, and had me on the edge of my seat in a few portions. It sets up the character of Lucy and Mercer and makes me want to continue following their story to see what happens to them.

The book is very professionally edited. I did not catch any grammar or spelling errors, and there were no awkwardly-phrased sentences to take me out of the action. I honestly can't think of anything that could be improved within the first chapter. I thought it was perfectly paced and a great set up for the main characters and their story.

The book did have an OnlineBookClub review, which definitely helped in convincing me to give this book a read. I read it after I read the sample, and I'm glad to hear that the book stays as well-written as it is in these first few pages.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 1:17 pm by scratchcat318.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


The book’s title didn’t really snag my attention. I thought it might be a tough-as-nails mystery by looking at it, and the description confirmed this. This isn’t the kind of mystery I usually enjoy; though, there are exceptions. Before sampling, I wasn’t thinking about reading this. After sampling, I’ll pass on this one. The writing is strong and seems professionally edited. I noticed no errors. The author does a great job of immersing the reader in the news photographer lifestyle in somewhere as crazy as LA/Hollywood. I really like that the jumper is someone the main character knows. Right away, this sets up for a story that hit close to the protagonist. The dialogue is crisp, snappy, and realistic. I have no improvements to recommend. This just isn’t my kind of book. The review says great things, just nothing to increase my interest.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 12:41 pm by desantismt_17.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Crime thrillers are not usually a genre I read, so I would pass on this book. The sample did not change my mind because I did not like the profanity and sexual content that was involved in the plot. Even though Gary was a crazy drug addict, I thought he deserved more sympathy from Lucy about his childhood. I could tell the author put a lot of time into developing the storyline and the characters. I only saw two errors and they were missing quotation marks.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:53 am by melissy370.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


From the cover, blurb, and review of this book, I wouldn’t have read it. It really didn’t sound like a story that I would enjoy, despite the promise of excitement. After reading the first ten pages I did change my mind and therefore will be reading the rest of this book. I thoroughly enjoyed how the author jumped right into the story with an exciting episode of a jumper on a ledge. Not only that, but they were able to introduce characters (and their strengths, background, and relationships) and show how a particular relationship could lead to tensions later in the book. I didn’t see anything specific that I would have wanted to change within the sample that I read, but it did seem well written and edited. The official review did not affect my decision at all.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:52 am by Scerakor.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I don't tend to read thrillers because their pace doesn't tend to jive with me, and that's the case here as well. Hinkin is plainly a solid writer, if a little workmanlike, and keeps up the speed you'd expect without falling into the trap of rattling off meaningless 'action'. If thrillers are your thing, you can definitely go worse than with Deadly Focus.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:19 am by NRoach.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


The title 'Deadly Focus' sounds intriguing and the cover seems to complement it. If the name of the book wasn't interesting enough, the pages which I have sampled surely managed to hook me. I liked Lucy's fierce nature the most. Apart from that, I think that ten pages aren't sufficient enough to comment on the characterisation. The scintillating usage of words makes the descriptions in the story more compelling. However, I noticed one grammatical error in the first ten pages. Other than that, the writing sounds solid and I am definitely going to continue reading this.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:08 am by daniya__shah3.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


Based on the review, had I not read the first 10 pages, I would not have read this book. I do enjoy thrillers; however, the plot sounds similar to many other books I've read. Girl chases killer, throws caution to the wind, gets into dangerous situation, gets saved in the nick of time...the end. Now that I have read the first 10 pages, I still don't plan on reading this book. I'll admit, it started off really exciting. I'm curious to know if she can talk Gary off of the ledge, but I can't help but think of how predictable the book may be. I only noticed one error where the author used "cop's" instead of "cops." There was an official OnlineBookClub review.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 11:02 am by ccrews0408.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No


Without being presented with the opportunity to read the book through this program, I am uncertain if I would have read it on my own. I like a good thriller, however, after sampling the book, the graphic descriptions of violence, sexual abuse and the language are not for me. I did read the official review, and the reviewer was spot on in her glowing remarks regarding the author’s ability to set up a very intense tone to this book. So, my preference for not reading this has absolutely no bearing on the author’s ability to put together a good murder mystery for those who enjoy this type of material. I found no grammar, spelling or editing errors. It would seem great care went into the writing and publication of this one with no changes recommended by me. Despite the horror of Lucy trying to talk Mercer off the ledge, I actually thought that part was written quite well. Lucy’s authoritative instructions really showed her strength in a tenuous situation. Inside, she was a mess, but on the outside, tough as nails. I think many fans of this genre will enjoy this book for its cat and mouse storyline. It’s just too explicit for my enjoyment.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 10:38 am by cpru68.
Do you plan to read the whole book? No

Christina O Phillips

The title and cover are simple yet appealing. The summary interested because the story includes a journalist. Without this program, I would have read the sample anyway. At first I was confused as to why a photographer working for a TV station was on the night shift with a field producer. Usually photographers work for newspapers, not TV stations. However, once Lucy found out she knew the potential jumper, I was hooked. I had to know what happened! Her talking him down, his drug-induced rant, I was so into the book that if there were any errors I did not notice them. The dialogue felt natural and there was a good mix of showing and telling.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 9:42 am by Christina O Phillips.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!


I would have sampled the book on my own as I love mysteries. The cover isn't very appealing. Although the blurb gives a good sense of the plot, it is far too long. Cutting the praises from it would have made it more appealing. The sample started with a bang, a man about to jump off a building, immediately pulling me in. A murder mystery revolving around a strong female protagonist, Mexican cartel, and murder sounds just what the Doc ordered! I like the premise and the narration and didn't notice any glaring errors. As I enjoyed the sample, I will read the balance of the book. The official review further had me intrigued about the book.

First Ten review added on June 15, 2018, at 7:55 am by gali.
Do you plan to read the whole book? Yes!

Total ~ 48%

Deadly Focus earned a score of 48%.

In other words, out of the top-level reviewers who read at least the first 10 pages of this book, 48% plan to read the whole book.

IMPORTANT: Any score over 10% is considered very good. And any score above 0% is acceptable.

Over a million books are published each year. Any given person could not even read .0001% of the books out there. This means readers have to be very selective. Even taking the time to look over reviews and blurbs, let alone read samples, is more time than most readers can afford for most books. The First Ten is a powerful focus group that addresses those issues. It creates a helpful tool for authors, publishers, and other readers.

Go to main Bookshelves page for Deadly Focus