Review update October 23, 2022

False Pretense (A Murder in the Mountains Book 4)

It’s been decided. Yesterday I mentioned that the beginning of my current read left me undecided about interest level, was it going to be worth my while? It was too early to tell given I’d only read a few pages. My assessment soon was that the story looked interesting but the writing was left wanting. In the end I didn’t read every page but did read the whole book.

My final decision? The story was well thought out, strong, and interesting. The writing/editing was inconsistent. There were large segments that worked well interspersed with smaller ones that were weak and dissatisfying.

Most of the weak segments were part of the transition between scenes. Tense seemed to be part of the problem at times. (Present? I mostly noticed when it felt off. I wasn’t paying enough attention to tell for sure what was originally intended. I’ve been told present tense is not easy to do well.) But the main distraction involved the regular habit of switching between showing and telling. I can see how it may have been easier to list the needed information leading into scene changes but that practice weakened the story.

In the end though, I loved the book.


My current read is going much better. The stories, strength wise, are on a par but the writing/editing is much better in this one. My one complaint is excessive descriptive detail. I’m skimming pages fairly often in this read too. But I’m loving it otherwise.

Sunrise (Sky King Ranch Book #1) 

Pilot Dodge Kingston has always been the heir to Sky King Ranch. But after a terrible family fight, he left to become a pararescue jumper. A decade later, he’s headed home to the destiny that awaits him. 

That’s not all that’s waiting for Dodge. His childhood best friend and former flame, Echo Yazzie, is a true Alaskan–a homesteader, dogsledder, and research guide for the DNR. Most of all, she’s living a life Dodge knows could get her killed. One of these days she’s going to get lost in the woods again, and his worst fear is that he won’t be there to find her.

When one of Echo’s fellow researchers goes missing, Echo sets out to find her, despite a blizzard, a rogue grizzly haunting the woods, and the biting cold. Plus, there’s more than just the regular dangers of the Alaskan forests stalking her . . .

Will Dodge be able to find her in time? And if he does, is there still room for him in her heart?


Sometimes I wonder if excessive descriptions are used as a tool for achieving word count. In most cases the stories would survive without them.

I’m happy reading.

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