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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Review: The Rookie’s Assignment by Valerie Hansen

Kiera Fitzgerald is the latest member of her family to join the police force in Fitzgerald Bay. Her father is the police chief, her uncle is the fire chief, and her grandfather is the mayor. Olivia Henry died mysteriously and worked as a nanny for Kiera’s brother Charles. Was it an accident or murder? Did she fall down the cliff or was she pushed? Detective Nick Delfino is sent to investigate the case and the family in charge of the town. He’s assigned to be Kiera’s partner. She takes him on a tour of the town and he meets her brothers. He’s eyed with suspicion and returns it. He notices he and Kiera are being followed. A van always seems to be in the same place. First, Kiera is almost hit by it. Second, a rock slide happens as they are investigating the crime scene. Then, Nick’s hotel room is burglarized. He’s accused of bringing a crime wave to the small town. When fingerprints are retrieved, a criminal, Anthony Carlton, from Nick’s past surfaces. After watching the couple, Carlton realizes Nick has feelings for Kiera. As an ultimate revenge, he kidnaps her and sets a trap for Nick.

The Fitzgerald clan reminds me of every big family that closes ranks when something bad happens. All information stays in the circle. No outsiders allowed. They believe their investigation is complete and no further inquiries are necessary. Trust is not bestowed lightly. Nick has to prove himself professionally and personally. His own department is testing him too. He turned in a fellow officer for aiding Carlton, who has since disappeared. Nick must solve the case once and for all then leave. He didn’t plan to fall in love with Kiera.

I liked Kiera and Nick. Trying to show herself to be capable and worthy to join the family business, she believes Nick is sincere. She makes it her job to prove her brother’s innocence and Nick can help. She’s still the rookie and makes mistakes, but keeps pushing. Nick is an excellent partner for her. He’s experienced and has grown a thicker hide because of it. He explains how he conducts investigations and she learns from him. He treats her as a peer, respects her insights, and praises her work. Their relationship is tentative, a few stolen kisses only.

The suspense is a bit weak. There is no evidence against Charles implicating him in the murder. Another family has spread the gossip about him for political reasons. Carlton should flee, not follow Nick. Being a stranger in a small town increases his chances of getting caught.

I recommend the book based on Kiera and her struggle to find her place in her family and the sweet relationship budding with Nick.

Purchase: | Amazon | Barnes & Noble |


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