I think the only book of Simone St. James I have really enjoyed has been The Sun Down Motel, and even that fell apart for me towards the end. I think the supernatural aspects of this book just actually didn’t work in this one one. The main character, Shea, was too self righteous for me and I got really tired of her by the end of the book.
“The Book of Cold Cases” follows receptionist, Shea Collins. Shea is just going through the motions of her day until she can go home and work on her true crime blog, ‘The Book of Cold Cases.’ When Shea realizes that one of the patients at the practice she works at is the infamous accused Lady Killer serial killer, Beth Greer, she follows her. When Beth confronts Shea, Shea asks to interview her for her blog. Beth agrees, and then Shea realizes that something strange is going on at the Greer mansion and that Beth may not be the killer she thinks she is.
I honestly liked Beth’s point of view chapters better. Shea’s chapters started to drag and also she started to get on my nerves. I had sympathy for the character when you read about what she went through as a child, but she really acts ridiculous with regards to Beth and what happened to her.
We follow some other characters in this one, but didn’t get a really good sense of anyone because of how the story flopped around. I did like Beth’s attorney as well as one of the detectives that was part of the Lady Killer case. I wish that we had gotten a chance to get their points of view rather than Beth/Shea’s thoughts about them.
The writing was good, and St. James sets a great scene with this town that seems to be about to fall into the ocean. I just thought that the last portion of the book just went off the rails a bit and didn’t really work. I don’t know what we were supposed to take away from things. I do think that us knowing who the bad guy was so early may be why things didn’t really gel. You just keep reading to see if Shea ever catches on to things.
The Greer mansion is very creepy and thought that was a perfect setting as a haunted house.
The ending definitely leaves you with a sense that things are still not really over.