The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth

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The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth

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Category: Crime
Rating: 2/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A young woman makes up her mind that she's going to find out who killed her twin brother. There are the bones of a good story here but it lacks decent editing.
Buy? No Borrow? Maybe
Pages: 176 Date: April 2012
Publisher: Matador
ISBN: 978-1848767850

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Librarian Penny Knight was surprised when she came home one day and found a jacket belonging to her twin brother Joseph hanging in the hall. He was supposed to be in Moscow for six months, working as a croupier. When she went through to the lounge he was lying on the sofa and her immediate reaction was that he was playing a trick on her - until she got closer and realised that there was something dreadfully wrong. And then she saw the blood. His last words were that he was innocent - and that she should look for a necklace in his jacket pocket. He died before he reached hospital. Penny and her parents were devastated - and then they realised that they were being watched.

Every first draft of a novel is perfect, because all it needs to be is completed, but that's when the hard work starts as editing resolves plot holes and copy editing irons out the misused words, grammatical and spelling errors and finally proofreading puts a shine on the manuscript prior to publication. Unfortunately some authors are so buoyed by completing the first draft that they dash to publication and that is what has happened with The Secret Locket. There are the bones of a very good story here but it needs a great deal more work before it becomes an enjoyable read.

I won't dwell on the errors - that would be counter-productive - as there are positives to take away from the book. I liked the character of Penny - initially stunned by the death of her brother and in shock at the way that she found him, she recovers sufficiently to decide that she is going to find out what happened to him, when the police investigations don't seem to be making much headway. The librarian becomes a feisty young woman prepared to put her own life at risk to find the truth. Joseph's girlfriend, Rubina, is neatly drawn: she's Polish but normally lives in Moscow with her lover, the owner of the casino and has the immigrant's insecurity. One false, ill-considered move could bring everything she's worked so hard to achieve tumbling down and she could be back in Poland and living in poverty. Besides - alcohol is always there.

There's a good pace to the plot and my heart was in my mouth on a couple of occasions as it looked as though Penny would not come out of this alive. There's promise in here - but it does need more work and I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

If this type of book appeals to you then we think that you might enjoy Blazing Obsession by Dai Henley.

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Buy The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Secret Locket by Suzan Stainforth at


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