3 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
It all started with a bang. At least, Prime Time Crime by Steve Liddick started with a bang. Nothing quite catches your attention like an explosion though and I was sufficiently hooked. This book follows Gary Mansfield, a Channel Seven cameraman, and a retired police officer. He walks into an office of chaos and learns that the city attorney has been killed in his home – by a bomb no less. Gary, producer Katt Li, and reporter Bob Richards are shipped off to the scene where they smell more than just a house fire. Maybe it was trouble or something fishy. Either way, it was clear someone was sending a message.
However, Gary can't just let the cops do their jobs, he needs to know more and do more. Accordingly, Gary starts talking to the investigators, generates his own leads, follows the new city attorney, Ms. Hammel, and gets his own confessions from associates of the Russian mob in town. Yet, in doing so, he puts his life and the life of his crew on the line, not to mention the police's investigation. His meddling may cost them the case – or save it – as he learns the truth behind the former city attorney's death.
I wholly enjoyed this book. It was a twist on traditional crime fiction books. Instead of following the investigators, the reader gets to follow a news crew. I really enjoyed this specific aspect as it was different and provided unique views of the case (i.e. how to report on the crime and what they are/aren't allowed to do). That said, since the main character, Gary, is a retired cop and had regular communication with investigators, I still had insight into what the police were doing.
I am also a hopeless romantic, so I was happy to see that Gary had a love interest in the book – Katt Li. From the beginning, I could tell that he had an obvious crush on the short, nerdy producer. When his divorce finally comes through, he gets the courage to tell Katt his feelings. It certainly left my romantic heart feeling giddy. That said, the ending was terribly cliché and almost made me want to cringe it was so cheesy. I didn't like it and think the author could have done better instead of trying to wrap it all up quickly.
Additionally, I was not a fan of chapters four through six. The author deviated from the story to provide background on three characters – Gary Mansfield, Katt Li, and Jerry Harper. It was disjointed and could have been worked into the story differently. Instead, the author took me out of the story to give me background on characters before going back to the story with minimal transition. These chapters could use some work in my opinion.
Overall, I have to give this book 3 out of 4 stars. This is for the above reasons and grammatical errors. That said, there were no glaring errors, the story flowed relatively well, and I was interested enough to read until the end. I'd recommend this to others who enjoy the mystery and crime fiction drama, though it was not as suspenseful as others I have read.
Prime Time Crime
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon