Cover Image: A Story of Bad

A Story of Bad

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Member Reviews

An enjoyable read, but I wish the story had focused more on the murder mystery and less on the romance.  My bad; that romance angle was clearly mentioned in the book synopsis... I just hoped it would be minimal.  The murder element was good, but not spectacular.  OK book for cold, rainy nights.
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There are really two stories here, that of the murder connected to a family owned business and that of the romance between Terry, the detective that is trying to solve the murder and June, the fashion journalist covering the human interest side that the family business. Both stories are interesting but I especially enjoyed the simple romance between two people who truly care for each other and enjoy being in each other's presence. Both the Terry and June are highly educated, witty, and willing to give each other as good as they get, while working together to brainstorm the murder of this respected business owner. 

The murder of the honest, kindhearted, sportswear manufacturer hits the company hard, not only because this hardworking man was involved every bit of the business but because two of his adult children ran the business with him while his third adult child owned a trucking company that sometimes delivered goods for his dad. The majority of the workers at the business were young women from Cambodia, who could barely speak or understand English and who, by working at this low paying but honest job, could send money back to their home country, where that money was very important to their families. 

June is further drawn into the murder case when she gets an anonymous call from a person who says she knows the identity of the murderer. She gets permission from her boss to pursue the story, knowing the story could break the boundaries of her usual fashion beat and become a big news story. Once she gets to know Terry and they develop a romantic relationship, Terry is willing to share information and even rely on June's thoughts about the crime, to help him figure out why the crime was committed and who may have committed the crime. Both parties are very aware that their relationship and their jobs could strain ethical boundaries but they are determined to keep things on the up and up while not letting their professional lives derail their feelings for each other. 

This is not an action packed thriller but instead a slow buildup of a relationship and dissection of a murder case. Added into the mix is the Cambodian element of with factory workers, living together in community homes but with many of them hoping to learn as much of the American way as possible.  Thank you to Global Authors Publishers and NetGalley for this Advanced Read Copy.
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The owner of a clothing manufacturing company is found murdered on the boarding dock. One of his employees find him, closely following is his daughter.   The lead detective on the case is baffled.  The place of murder strikes him as odd, as well as how the man was killed. Most of the employees are foreign girls who know little, if any, English language.  With the daughter's help, talking to them shows no one who had a grudge, they were all fairly paid, they all seemed to like where they work.  So who wanted him dead?

June is a reporter.. not a crime reporter.. but a fashion writer.  She's putting together the story of how this business came to be, the vision of the owner, and how things are faring for the company since the owner's death.  A note is slipped to her, written in broken English, only saying that they know who killed the man.

Meeting the detective, there's an instant attraction on both sides ... but we all know how cops and reporters do not normally share a romance because of the secrets they  must each keep.  But these two are relentless and decide they can work together, albeit having to walk quietly around the others they work with.

When there's another killing,  the case, as well as their relationship becomes a lot more complicated. As they grow closer their supervisors are increasingly uncomfortable with the situation, concerned about confidentiality and workplace ethics and politics. 

Can they solve the mystery while keeping their relationship on the up and up? 

This romantic suspense was a slow starter for me, but great attention was paid to the development of the characters which I really appreciated as I grew into the story.  I really enjoyed how the cop and reporter related to each with humor and the understanding of their respective jobs.  

The plot was well written, leading me in all kinds of directions that seemed plausible to me. There are twists and turns, and there are plenty  of suspects to keep an eye on.

Many thanks to the author / Global Authors Publishers / Netgalley for the digital copy of this romantic suspense.  Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.
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This story has a somewhat different flow and rather long timeline compared to many other mysteries, but it works! The length of chapters is also a little strange, with huge variation, but it's logical with a change of perspective.
Good plot, good story, good characters, and the best part of the book is all the witty dialogue.
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