Cover Image: Crime Writer

Crime Writer

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I enjoyed the blending of the genres in this book and I loved the characters. 
Many thanks to Ruby Books and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
Was this review helpful?
Crime Writer by Dime Sheppard is a mesmerizing read about a writer of crime fiction. When her own life turns mysterious, Evie’s world blurs, including the line between her fictional world and the real world. Can she solve a crime? Or write a bestseller? Readers of thrillers will love this book with a twist. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.
Was this review helpful?
5 freaking stars for me! 
I loved everything about this book. 
I was intrigued since page 1 
This book is very fast paced. 
I loved the quirky combination of genres in this book: crime thriller, romcom, magical realism, contemorary drama. its unusal blend that works surprisingly well for my liking. 
The twist and turns had me not wanting to put the book down. 
I love the characters.
Was this review helpful?
In a Nutshell: A crime thriller with magical realism thrown in! Amazingly creative! The ending was a bit too farfetched for my liking (don’t forget that I am an overanalytical weirdo), but otherwise, I enjoyed it. To be read with your logical glasses kept aside. 

Story Synopsis: 
Evie Howland is a crime writer who is dealing with a writer’s block for the sixteenth book of her crime thriller series featuring detectives Carolyn Harding and Jay Ryan. Adding to the trouble is her upcoming wedding to billionaire Daniel Bradley, the public attention of which leaves introverted Evie flustered. The icing on the cake is when her on-page characters start becoming a bit too real. When a too-familiar homicide is reported in the newspapers, it seems like the line between fact and fiction has blurred to a dangerous level. What’s happening, and how will shy Evie save the world from the unforeseen consequences, and herself too?
The book comes to us in the first person perspective of Evie.

Where the book worked for me:
😍 I loved the quirky combination of genres: crime thriller, romcom, magical realism, contemporary drama. It’s an unusual blend that works surprisingly well. 
😍 What a unique plot! While this isn’t the first book I’ve read with fictional characters crossing over into the real world (Jodi Picoult’s Between the Lines was the first), the approach was totally different. I enjoyed this one far more and simply couldn’t keep it aside.
😍 The book is quite fast-paced, with enough twists and turns to keep most readers happy. The thrills and pace accelerate with every subsequent chapter!
😍 Evie and her two detectives Carolyn and Jay are such brilliant characters – well sketched, realistic and appealing. (Someone please write a Jay Ryan for my life and make him come alive!) Evie’s struggles with writing also are written well. I am sure writers will empathise with her even more than we ordinary readers will. That said, Evie is an introvert who prefers sitting with her book in a room to going out and mingling with people. Boy, how I connected with her on that feeling!
😍 The villain is truly and properly villainous, and with good reason to boot, and to top it all, with a cool name. After a long time have I read an evil character who is worth being called a villain.
😍 There are plenty of fun elements in the book, and plenty of existential questions wrt writing characters into being and the concept of free will. Liked the balance between deep and frivolous.
😍 The romance – just perfect. (My friends: how many times have you seen me praise the romance in a non-romance genre book?)
😍 To a certain extent, there is a book within a book, but thankfully, the secondary book doesn’t pull down the main plot as it does in Stephen King’s Misery. The subplot appears only when needed.

Where the book could have worked better for me:
😒 The last 20% or so goes into hyper mode, with too many action sequences and not enough of explanations. I would have preferred knowing the answers to some of the oddities that occurred. 
😒 Some of the secondary characters are quite predictable though they are used properly in the book. (On second thought, there were certain secondary characters whom I considered predictable but they weren’t. I guess that invalidates the severity of this point. Ignore this point!)

All in all, I enjoyed this thrilling book that offered such a novel take on “Words have power”. Definitely recommended, as long as you know that it has magical realism elements and hence is to be read without overthinking every scene. To my Indian friends, I’ll just add: it is a masala entertainer. (You know what I mean.)

4.25 stars, which would easily have been 4.5 if I had loved the final segment of the book as much as the rest of it.

My thanks to Ruby Books and NetGalley for the DRC of “Crime Writer”. This review is voluntary and contains my honest opinion about the book.
Was this review helpful?
4.5 Stars 
One Liner: Love it! 

Evie Howland is working on the sixteenth book of her famous police procedural series. She is also trying to overcome writer’s block (shh! don’t even say that word aloud) and planning her wedding with a super-rich and handsome Daniel. She is used to seeing her characters in her house. But when the lead characters Carolyn and Jay become visible to just about everyone, Evie knows she is in trouble. 
Things get worse when psychopath killers from her books are also out in the open and going on a killing spree. The only way Evie can control the situation is by facing her biggest fears and overcoming them. Unfortunately, escaping to the fictional world is no longer an option for her. 
Can Evie do what it takes to save the day? 
The story comes from Evie’s first-person POV and a chapter of her book in the third-person narration. 

My Thoughts: 
Well, this is a wonderful surprise. I kept pushing the book down my list because of the page count (440 pages!). This is one of those rare instances when I wondered why I didn’t pick it up sooner. 
The book is a blend of genres and could pretty much be classified as contemporary/ urban magic realism (I created this subgenre), along with being a thriller and a rom-com. The idea is to go with the flow and enjoy where the author’s imagination takes you. 
As a writer, this is even more delightful and a wee bit scary. Imagine writing monsters and Hulders killing people. I sure don’t want them to come alive (so glad that I set my stories in forests). At the same time, I also want to create my perfect guy and make him appear in reality. It’s too tempting! 
Back to the book, the plot is whimsical, emotional (without being overwhelming), and action-intensive (especially in the second half). It is easy to visualize the scenes and would make a cool screen adaptation. 
Evie’s character starts off as a nerdy writer (even a little annoying, at times), but we see her depth as the story progresses. Jay and Carolyn are my absolute favorites. I mean, how can you not fall in love with Jay Ryan? 
Every book has a few clichés, and so does this one. Here, Evie straight out tells us that it is cliché, so it adds to the fun. Evie’s voice is fun to read. She can be dramatic, quirky, silly, stupid, and childish. It makes her a rather sweet and capable MC to carry the book on her fragile shoulders. 
As a fan of HEA, I am delighted by the ending. It is just right without being too sweet or sugary. And it also has a piece of advice for writers who want to make their characters appear in real life and keep them there (if you haven’t figured it out already, I am taking this seriously). 
My only grouse is that one important scene in the climax is (intentionally?) vague. It increases the anticipation to know what happens, but I had to read it twice to understand what was happening. Also, there are a few missed threads/ connections. I assumed the connections based on guesswork. 

To summarize, Crime Writer is a wonderfully quirky book and is a tasty mixed vegetable curry (Indians, you know what I mean). The first 10% is slow. Hang in there, and it’ll pick up the pace. 
Thank you, NetGalley and Ruby Books, for the eARC. This review is voluntary and contains my honest opinion about the book. 
The links to reviews on other platforms will be added in a couple of days.
Was this review helpful?
overall, this was a really dope read. It was so much more than I was expecting out of a mystery book, and I definitely want to check out more from this author!
Was this review helpful?
Witty, fast paced and original. That's how I would describe this book. It's so entertaining. It's a book any fan of true crime would love. Without giving away spoilers my advice is to just read it. The mystery is so much fun and the characters are enjoyable.
Was this review helpful?
Crime writer

This is not your standard crime story but much more, I have to be honest the first couple of pages I thought this is not the book for me but then everything just changed and I was hooked.

This book had a very intriguing premise where an author (Evie Holland) is working on her 16th book of her crime novel series, but like all writers she suffers from writers block on the third chapter of this book.  Evie is overdue on the deadline for this book so you can understand her frustration, there is loads going on in her personal life including Wedding preps.  Poor Evie tries everything to overcome her writers block mediation, affirmations, exercise and even drinking coffee. Then things take an incredible turn and the Main Character in Evie’s book start assisting the writer.  The book was a mix of plot and character, fast paces and I found it very adventurous and at times mysterious too. 

I really enjoyed Dime Sheppard’s writing style, where she created her own bookish reality it was easy to follow, her book had a unique premise.  Although Dime took us on a ride and I was hooked to my seat, I felt that the end came a bit to quick for my liking.  It was my first time reading Dime Sheppards work and I am looking forward to read the her future work.  

I would like to thank Net Galley and Dime Sheppards for an ARC in exchange for a honest review.
Was this review helpful?
WOW. Sometimes debut novels can just stun you and this is one of them! Part sarcastic main lead ala Janet Evanovich, a touch of vintage rom com ala Victoria Holt and a bit of suspended belief ala Diana Gabaldon, and you've got a charmer that stays with you long after you finished reading it! Any avid reader can tell you they often wondered if writers feel like their characters are real, and what might happened if they actually WERE real. But to take those ideas and make a page turner of a book from them? Pure genius! There are so many sub-themes, and while most avid readers will soon sense what is going to happen, there are enough twists to keep you reading! It's a charming book and I can definitely see a TV series or movie coming from it, so read it before everyone starts talking about it!
Was this review helpful?
There are those books you read and forget and those you cannot. This definitely belongs to the latter group.

Dime Sheppard wrote a brilliant book about a crime writer and her mixed and to be sure sometimes very troubled relationship to her stories and fictional detectives. There are multiple layers to the story, lovable and deep characters, intense suspension - everything what you need from a truly remarkable read.

I just loved it. It's totally unputdownable, a fresh and unconventional take on a 200-year-old genre. She is criss-crossing between crime, magical realism and love adding a special sense of humour, and the end result is simply great.

Totally worth the time - I read it twice already.
Was this review helpful?
Evie is dealing with writer's block and her agent is anxiously awaiting the last installment of the series. When her beloved characters come to life, Evie must figure out how to get them back into the unwritten book before they get everyone in trouble. The premise of this book was so refreshing! There was humor, suspense, and romance all packed into the story. While I haven't read anything from Dime Sheppard before, I will definately be adding this author to my list.
Was this review helpful?
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of Crime Writer by Dime Sheppard. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thanks to NetGalley and Ruby Books for this ARC.

Crime Writer was a very unique book. While it took me a bit to understand the concept of the characters of literary work being real in a type of reality that only writers can see, it ended up being fun. Did I have to accept a few confusing plot shifts? Yes. Did it deter me from enjoying the book? No. It was a lot of fun, and I especially enjoyed the last half of the novel. I give Crime Writer a solid 4/5 stars.
Was this review helpful?
This book is amazing!  I couldn’t put it down and seriously can’t wait for the next one. If you’re into true crime with witty repartee this book is for you. 5*
Was this review helpful?
i have nothing to say besides “no<3” but i need one hundred characters for some reason so let’s hope this is enough.
Was this review helpful?
DNF at 44%
I really wanted to enjoy this. The idea of it really drew me in, but I just couldn’t get through it unfortunately. This book had a really strong start. I really enjoyed the storyline, the descriptions were really well done, but I felt it slowly continued going downhill. I didn’t feel the urge to pick it up and I was getting so bored reading it. I was really hoping that it would get better, but I never got to that point. 
Thank you to NetGalley and Ruby Books for the eARC
Was this review helpful?
What a clever construct for a story! I loved this book within a book format. An author who is trying to avoid her feelings hides away and becomes reclusive until she faces writer's block and her 16th detective novel isn't coming together. Over the years she's developed the habit of talking to her characters in her mind - but suddenly they're talking back! And other people can see them!

It's such a cool idea to imagine favorite book characters coming to life and interacting with you. And, of course, Evie knows everything about the characters and their lives since she invented them - and loves them. EXCEPT she discovers that ALL her characters are now real, including the criminals. And now she has to fix it somehow and keep the serial killer from killing real people. 

The magical part of this novel, the book characters becoming real, is entertaining and unusual. But the 2nd part of the plot is Evie trying to work through her issues - her fear, her grief over losing her dad, her avoidance of interactions with people. As the story progresses and she realizes she likes her characters more than any real people in her life, it helps her come to terms with some of her issues. 

I liked how Evie would make references to previous books when talking to the detectives as they would try to figure out how to catch the killer. Things like: remember when in book 12 he called a friend? or similar. Kind of a good way to introduce information or a minor character into the current story.

My main "complaint" with the story is there are just too many people and I kept getting the bad guys mixed up.. With the exception of Bobby, the killer, all the rest would pop up here and there with little back story and I just couldn't remember who they were or why they were in the story.

All in all, I really enjoyed this book and its unusual construct to tell two stories - the real life story of Evie, the author, and the novel that she's trying to write. Definitely worth picking up and enjoying!

reviews on Bookshelf Journeys 10/3; Goodreads, Storygraph, pinterest, FB and amazon
Was this review helpful?
Evie Howland is New York Times best-selling author. Currently, she's working on her sixteenth book and final instalment in one of the most successful crime series ever written. The truth is, this has never happened to her before. She was past her deadline and deep down didn't want to finish it. She loses her touch and spends so much time with people who aren't real. It's like the whole scene, all the characters in her book coming to life. Along with Detective Carolyn Harding and Detective Jay Ryan save the world from a serial killer! Hah.

Yes. I think it's worth having writer's block. For the mystery thriller and romance genre, I give 4 ⭐️. Thanks to @netgalley and Ruby Books for providing an earc.
Was this review helpful?
Crime Writer is an incredible read! It’s gumshoe, romance, action-packed and funny!

Evie Howland is your average introverted best-selling crime writer. In real life she lives in New York and is engaged to a handsome billionaire named Daniel Bradley. Although she must go to some fancy events, which in truth she hates because she would rather be at home in her sweats eating licorice and writing, she adores her soon to be (in two weeks) husband-to-be so she tolerates the inconvenience.

She also treasures her two main characters in her crime series, Detectives Carolyn Harding and Jack Ryan. But for some reason she is finding it very hard to sit and concentrate and write. You see this is book sixteen and it will be the last in the series. While writing she usually talks to her characters and they talk back (in her head), or so she thought. But for some crazy reason this time is different.

She could always envision them in her mind’s eye, but now they can be seen by everyone! She has no idea why, and neither do they, but they are very excited! Carolyn and Jack now have free will and don’t have to listen to Evie’s boring written instructions. While the story Evie is writing plays in real life, she not only becomes embroiled in it, but she realizes the bad guys have also somehow crossed over to reality.

As Carolyn and Jack enjoy their new freedom, Evie finds it hard to reel them back in. And while the three of them try to avoid being killed by a psycho she created in a past book, she begins to feel the excitement her characters must have felt for all these years. She even realizes they have given themselves their own backstories which she finds bewildering.

She soon discovers as they are being hunted and shot at that she starts to look at Jack in a very inappropriate way which is kind of crazy as he is not real, right? When she figures out she can write their way out of the chaos and killing, she’s not sure she wants to. You see, she knows the ending. She’s not ready to let them go. But unfortunately for Evie, New York City depends on her solving this case before it gets blown up!

But how can she say good-bye to these lovable, crazy, uncouth hero’s, one of which she may love?

Crime writer has everything in a story you could ask for. Funny, witty quick dialogue, bombs, explosions, romance quirky characters and many surprises.

One last thing, there is a music video from the 1980’s called Take On Me by a group called Aha. Watch it. Enough said.

Thank you #NetGalley #RubyBooks #DimeSheppard #CrimeWriter for the
Was this review helpful?
The most creative piece of literature I have read in a long time! There is mystery, action, romance and fantasy. I don't want to spoil anything, but I will say that it is an absolute page turner from beginning to end. My only caveat is that the ending moved a little too quickly compared to the rest of the book - which felt more fleshed out.
Was this review helpful?
A little bit Stranger Than Fiction and a little bit The Last Action Hero,  Crime Writer is an action-filled adventure with a charming dash of whimsy (complete with a hilariously Brigadoon-esque wise Scottish elder, dispensing advice and exposition). It's a little bit of everything, not digging too deep but reliably supplying the kind of chaotic entertainment I enjoy. Although it took me a while to warm up to them, I ended up liking the characters and found their arcs both satisfying and earned, though the exact plot mechanics of the ending were less so

My thanks to NetGalley and to Ruby Books for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?