You Can Die
Grade : A

I have thoroughly enjoyed Rebecca Zanetti’s Laurel Snow series, and this third installment, You Can Die, is another stellar hit. It’s a thrilling procedural filled with well-developed characters and a plausible, engaging plot.

Laurel’s field office in Genesis Valley is now operational, and she’s chugging along at a good groove. It’s a little worrisome to learn there’s another serial killer in her neck of the woods, (pretty much cementing my decision to continue residing elsewhere in the lower 48!) Her community is lucky to have her because Laurel proves time and again that her analytical intelligence will save the day.

With each book in the series, we’ve learned new details about Laurel. Her family features prominently in this one and shines a light on what makes Laurel tick. She’s been trying to find her father, Zeke Caine, for years. He’s a rape-y former pastor who looms over her like a dark shadow, and kin or not, Laurel intends to make him pay for his crimes. Her half-sister Abigail is a brilliant, manipulative sociopath who likes to play mind games with Laurel to test her mettle. And while Laurel’s brilliance is a good, pure counter to her sister’s, Abigail is still incredibly dangerous. It’s not one-hundred-percent clear whether Abigail intends to kill Laurel, but it is one-hundred-percent clear that Laurel intends to hold Abigail accountable for her crimes. So, when murdered men in their corner of rural Washington state begin turning up in front of churches and counseling centers, Laurel’s radar is pinged… particularly since Zeke Caine is one of the victims.

Laurel’s boyfriend, Washington Fish and Wildlife Captain Huck Rivers, appears in more of a supportive role this go-round, but even though he isn’t a prominent figure in solving the crimes, he’s prominent in developing our knowledge of Laurel. That being said, Huck is a richly developed character who greatly affects the trajectory of Laurel’s life, proving a sounding board for her thought process and reflecting it back in steadfast support. She is a cool, no-nonsense, critical thinker who falls back on analytics and data; Huck is a demonstrative, tactile operator who relies on his gut instinct, and reminds Laurel to connect with people on an emotional level. Independently, they are effective in their jobs, and can cope with ‘peopling’; together, they are a formidable force. Opposites definitely attract in Laurel Snow’s world.

You Can Die is a cautionary tale of living in the moment and not letting opportunity pass you by. For instance, even though Laurel got to meet Zeke before he died, their conversations were brief and fueled by suspicion and machination. Abigail’s presence and obvious relationship with Zeke helped neither, and only amplified the tension in Laurel’s life. I wish Zeke’s reunion with Laurel had occurred sooner in the book so we would’ve had more time with him – psychopath or not.

Zanetti is a prolific author with a broad scope of titles under her belt. Whether she’s writing about serial killers, vampires, demons, shapeshifters, enhanced soldiers, charming attorneys, or post-apocalyptic scenarios, she really can do no wrong. She’s an expert world builder with a keen eye for detail and most importantly, simply a great storyteller.

Reviewed by Dolly Sickles

Grade: A

Book Type: Romantic Suspense

Sensuality: Warm

Review Date : July 26, 2023

Publication Date: 07/2023

Review Tags: Laurel Snow series

Recent Comments …

Dolly Sickles

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments