Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Book Review: LIE CATCHERS by Rolynn Anderson


Two unsolved murders will tear apart an Alaska fishing town unless a writer and a government agent reveal their secret obsessions.

Treasury agent Parker Browne is working undercover in Petersburg, Alaska to investigate a money scam and a murder. His prime suspect, Liv Hanson, is a freelance writer struggling to save her family’s business. Free spirited, full of life, and with a talent for catching liars, she fascinates Parker.

Trying to prove she’s a legitimate writer who cares about Petersburg’s issues, Liv pens a series of newspaper articles about an old, unsolved murder. When her cold case ties in with Parker’s investigation, bullets start to fly.

Parker understands money trails, and Liv knows the town residents. But he gave up on love two years ago, and she trusts no one, especially with her carefully guarded secret. If they mesh their skills to find the killers, will they survive the fallout?

Review by Melissa Snark:

LIE CATCHERS is a romantic murder mystery set in a contemporary Alaskan fishing town.  Rolynn Anderson has a style that bears strong similarity to authors in the mainstream suspense thriller genre. Her storytelling skills are strong and her dialogue sounds realistic to the reader's ear. Description is concise, leaving much to the imagination. Secondary characters are complex and memorable. In particular, I liked the heroine's tough guy brother, Ivor. The writing is tight and stays on point, always following the plot through to the nail biting climax.

Liv Hanson, is a frustrated newspaper columnist who helps out with her family's store and has unfulfilled writing ambitions. She is also a human lie detector with an extraordinary memory. She's a bit frenzied and a little strange, but her quirks are entirely likeable.  Early on, she decides to investigate on old unsolved murder in conjunction with the hero's real life investigation. She fictionalizes the historical murder. Unfortunately, I found the story segments written by Liv to be somewhat disruptive to story flow. The author is definitely a more talented writer than her heroine.

Parker Browne is an undercover treasure agent working to solve the drowning death of a local fisherman.  The hero is a hard man to get a feel for so I had trouble connecting with him. Throughout the beginning of the story I was left feeling like I didn't really know him. Characterization does become more discernable as the story progresses. Parker is appropriate courageous, protective and considerate and comes through in the end. I enjoyed his chemistry with Liv, although, I would have liked more explicit romantic encounters.

My favorite thing was how the author managed to create such an amazing setting as the backdrop to her story. I loved the cultural information provided about Alaskan fishing culture and how it affects not only fishermen but the economy of an entire settlement. (The whole Zipper Up/Zipper Down thing is weird until it's finally explained. Then it makes sense.)  The heroine's heritage of Norwegian and Tlingit was interesting and descriptions of her jewelry sent me to Google to search for "Trade Beads".

LIE CATCHERS is a recommended read for fans of suspense thrillers involving a romance central to the plot. I received an advanced review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Available for purchase at Amazon.

Author Bio:

Scandinavian, Army Brat, English Teacher, High School Principal, Golfer, Boater, World Traveler, Author.  With her experiences, Rolynn Anderson is fairly bursting with stories about extraordinary people and amazing settings, real and contrived. Now add her competitive nature and her love of ‘the makeover.’  As a principal, she and the staff she hired, opened a cutting-edge high school; as co-captain with her husband on INTREPID, she cruises from Washington State to Alaska and back.  As a writer, she delights in creating imperfect characters faced with extraordinary, transforming challenges.  Her hope: You'll devour her ‘makeover’ suspense novels in the wee hours of the morning, because her stories, settings and characters, capture your imagination and your heart.

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  1. As always, I am in awe of Melissa Snark, a multi-talented woman who seems to stretch the hours of the day. She's prolific as a writer, blogger and reviewer of novels. She's managed to make Internet manipulation and marketing look easy. Eagle-eyed, bright and witty, Melissa's prose always delights, no matter what form. I appreciate the detailed reviews she's written of two of my books, SWOON and LIE CATCHERS, and I listen carefully to her advice. She may know more about my writing than I do...she's that wise. Thank you, Melissa, for all you do for us!

    1. Thanks, Rolynn. You're too sweet. I don't even know what to say. >>insert some blushing and stammering here.