Title: The Echo Killing (Harper McClain #1)
Author : Christi Daugherty
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Publication Date: 03/13/18
Dates Read: 03/09/18 – 03/11/18
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Harper McClain is a reporter for a newspaper in Savannah, Georgia, where she chases down the ‘best crimes’ on a daily basis in order to make it to the front page of the paper. Harper is fascinated with crime, especially murder, and attributes this strange inclination to the traumatic event of her childhood that changed her life–the murder of her mother. The murder of her mother that she had to stumble upon when she arrived home from school, alert the police to, and that ultimately ended her childhood.
When Harper shows up to a crime scene that feels eerily familiar and watches as the police lead a young girl out of the home–a young girl that she sees so much of herself in–Harper as to get a closer look. Breaking the law and taking a major risk, Harper trespasses into the backyard in order to get a closer look through the window and comes to a stunning realization. The crime scene is identical to that of her mother’s killing.
As Harper becomes heavily involved in the investigation of the murdered woman’s life and the inspection of the suspects, danger begins to loom above her like a dark cloud. Not only could her job threatened by her dangerous obsession with the crime, but her life could also be at risk. How far is Harper willing to go to uncover the truth about her mother’s murder?
★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆ ★ ☆
I binge read this title over the weekend in only a few sittings. I am a sucker for a good police procedural–my OG favorite genre. Now, this isn’t exactly a cut-and-dry police procedural.. it’s actually a quite nice hybrid of the genre in my opinion. You get all of the heavy police involvement and criminal investigation… but through the eyes of a crime reporter instead of a detective. This was a unique touch and set this novel apart from other crime thrillers.
The characters were fantastic and the author did a great job of building a meaningful background story for Harper that made me feel very invested in her character. I loved Miles, the freelance photographer that Harper worked closely with. And I also loved the was that Daugherty wove a touch of romance into the web of a criminal investigation… all these personable touches make readers invested in the characters and highly likely to pick up future installments in the Harper McClain series.
The only reason that this title did not get a full five stars from me was the sole reason that I was able to determine who the killer was. Very early on in the novel, I had two specific characters that I was suspicious of, and had already pinpointed the blatant red herring, and continued to refine my theory to the correct person. Now, this might not be the case for everyone… I had read so many police procedurals and crime thrillers that I feel like I know the ins and outs of the genre pretty well and can usually make pretty educated guesses.. but the ending of this one just felt like a bit of a cop-out to me. Nevertheless.. it did not deter me from fully enjoying this novel and I will absolutely be picking up the next installment in the Harper McClain series.
Thank you to Christi Daugherty and Minotaur Books for providing me with a DRC of this title via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!