If you like fast-paced action, great lead characters, and don’t mind a few F-bombs and the occasional gore, DV Berkom is the author for you. Berkom writes with a gritty flair that will appeal to any connoisseurs of the hard-boiled genre. In her latest novel, Serial Date, the author — best known for her Amazon-bestselling Kate Jones series — continues to demonstrate her knack for kick-ass heroines with complex back stories, with Madeleine “Leine” Basso, a retired assassin hoping to make a new start on the straight-and-narrow. That dream goes out the window when Leine is hired for security after a member of the cast of Serial Date — a reality show in which women vie to win the hearts of ex-cons whom they believe are actually serial killers — is found brutally murdered. Sparks fly when our heroine meets sexy police detective Santiago Jensen, and things only get more complicated from there, when Leine’s estranged daughter is kidnapped by the killer, intent on drawing Leine into his twisted fantasies of revenge.
Berkom is an intelligent writer who understands the nuances of plot, the importance of pacing, and how to create complex, sympathetic characters. It’s difficult to take the gaudy world of reality television seriously, so Berkom doesn’t even try — she stops just shy of caricature by creating convincingly self-serving villains with compelling back stories of their own. If she occasionally crosses that line — as with Senator Buzz Runyon, a career politician with a long history of indiscretions with farm animals — Berkom invariably does so with a wink and a nod to her readership. You won’t find life lessons or profound statements on the nature of existence in Serial Date, which is one of the reasons I loved it: It’s unapologetic camp of the best kind, sure to keep you glued to the page as you try to guess what comes next, who did what to whom, and whether or not the guy will get the girl in this particular outing. Leine and Jensen are characters with great chemistry, and I for one am very much looking forward to finding out what they have in store for their next adventure!
Author’s Website: http://dvberkom.com/
Jen Blood is a freelance writer and editor, reviewer of mystery/suspense novels, and author of 5-star rated, Awesome Indies-selected mystery All the Blue-Eyed Angels, the first novel in the Erin Solomon series. Visit her website, http://bloodwrites.com, for mystery reviews, excerpts, interviews with authors, and posts on writing craft, indie publishing, and more.