I Can See You
I Can See You is my first experience with Karen Rose. It won’t be my last.
The book introduces a new series featuring the Hat Squad, Minneapolis homicide detectives who are ceremoniously presented with a fedora upon completion of their first successful case. The author kicks things off with the story of recovering alcoholic Noah Webster and former assault victim Eve Wilson.
Noah and Eve have both watched – and lusted after – each other from afar for months in the cop joint where Eve works as a bartender while pursuing her graduate degree in psychology. Noah knows a bar is last place he should be, but he comes in weekly nevertheless to watch Eve, never once making a move – or taking a drink.
When a series of women turn up brutally murdered with each crime scene is staged to look like suicide, the connection between the victims is initially elusive to the police. Eve, however, soon begins to suspect that the tie is an online role-playing game called Shadowland and that all of the victims were participants in her research project into the possible benefits of virtual gaming as a therapeutic tool.
Like all good police procedurals, there are many twists and turns, and the truth is any more details about the plot just might spoil some of your enjoyment. Suffice it to say that Eve and Noah find themselves working together. The heat turns up. And the killer gets closer and closer.
Both Eve and Noah are real, three-dimensional characters and I liked them both. Truth be told, however, it’s fair to say that for me “wounded” Eve was a bit too “wounded” sometimes. Noah, on the other hand, I loved. He’s a real guy dealing with real issues in the best way he knows how.
As for the suspense, it worked for me. Very well. The killer – and this comes under the category of Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You – knows enough about each of his victims to stage their deaths by their greatest fears – snakes and being buried alive are just two of the nightmare-inducing examples. Though most of the truly icky stuff takes place off the page, there’s enough there that my worst fears – and that definitely include snakes and being buried alive – were pretty horrifically brought to life.
As for what I didn’t like quite so much, I am not generally the best at guessing the identity of the perp in romantic suspense, but I had it here. Very early on. This didn’t diminish from my enjoyment of the unfolding of the author’s taut story, but I kept expecting twists that just didn’t happen. It was a shade – just a shade – disappointing.
Bottom line? I Can See You served as an excellent Karen Rose starter for me. I’ll definitely be back for more.