4 out of 4 stars
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Iris De Vere is a young lady with big dreams and aspirations. New in town and looking for a job, Iris stumbles upon the biggest mystery of her young career. With the help of her friends and family, will she be able to solve this puzzle? Set in California, this story has a modern-day feel to it. It takes one a few years back to the days of teenage sleuthing and unsolvable mysteries, which are positively nostalgic.
Accidental Target by B. Payton Settles is an exciting crime mystery that can best be described as the benefits of being in the right place at the right time, for want of better words to express my thoughts. Our young heroine is a quintessential female with lofty dreams, aspirations, and determination to prove herself worthy to the people in her life. She is fragile and fierce at the same time, and her refusal to back down when she thinks she is on to something is just so charming. It's like watching a cocker spaniel struggling with a bone in its mouth.
I enjoyed analyzing the various characters in the book with their different outlooks on life. There were the quirky ones, the humorous individuals, and the downright creepy, underhanded urchins at work. There was almost no romance in this story, but with the way our heroine got into it with the men in her circle, I had the impression that there was a possible romance angle hidden within this murder mystery. The storyline was very smooth, and the author kept the suspense at a high tempo right till the end of the book. The attention to detail in terms of character development was applaudable.
If there were anything I disliked about the book, It would be the mild stereotyping within it. The way I saw it, the author made it look like black Hispanics are only known for societal vices. This could be a big challenge for readers caught up in this stereotype. Beyond that, there was nothing else to dislike and everything else to love about this book. B. Payton Settles put a gem on paper here — a true masterpiece with an explosive mix of culture and mystery. Hopefully, this would be the beginning of a new series of crime novels.
In this present day, with so many negative influences on radio and television, having a fictional role model to look up to would go a long way to add some stability to the life of a child. I would recommend this book to children and youth in need of guidance and direction. School administrators would also be doing their pupils and students an excellent service to include this book in their reading curriculum.
Accidental Target is a lovely book with a relatable heroine, a plot that holds your attention to the very last page, and more than enough helping of humor to go along with it. I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. The editing may have been better. However, this is a book well worth the time spent on it.
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