Monday, April 24, 2017

(35)The Red Hunter by Lisa Unger


Claudia Bishop gives up her life and successful career in publishing to move her teen daughter to the country to renovate an old house that has been in the family forever. She blogs about her experiences and feels as if her life is finally starting to come together.  The country is good for her soul, as she is still dealing with the scars of a brutal rape that changed her life forever.  Her daughter, Raven, is less than thrilled about the move and even less thrilled about knowing that there is a 50% chance that her father is the man who raped her mother.

Zoey Drake's life was changed forever the night her parents died in a violent home invasion where the intruders were looking for money they thought her father had.  Until that night she had been your typical teenager living a life untouched by bad stuff.  Now she is a professional housesitter who uses the martial arts to help police the streets of New York City and cares for her ailing uncle in her spare time.    Her soul is a dark one and she feels no remorse at killing one of the men who killed her parents. Now she seeks to find the others who were a part of changing her life.

Zoey and Claudia know nothing of each other, but they have one thing in common,  The crumbling farmhouse that Claudia is renovating.  As Claudia peels away the decades of grime and dirt she discovers the dark secrets the home hides.  Will she be able to get to the truth before her life is touched by violence once again?

The Red Hunter is a well-crafted mystery that centers around money. After all, money is the root of all evil, right?   A million dollars was stolen from a drug dealer and has not been found since it's theft.  In fact, the missing money is what led to the murder of  Zoey's parents.  This missing money has an impact on both Zoey and Claudia.  The story is told from multiple narrators and you have to pay attention because the chapter titles don't reveal who is currently narrating the story.  Claudia and Zoey were both likable characters.  They were both deeply damaged by the events of their past, but I think that Claudia was a little bit further in the healing process.  One of the reasons why I like Lisa Unger is because she always keeps me guessing at the "whodunit" part of the mystery.   Lisa Unger is known for building tension with craftily written chapters that unpeel a layer by layer - like an onion.  Each chapter causes your heart rate to pick up a little more, building to a volatile conclusion that will leave you saying "I didn't see that coming." -- CLICK HERE FOR SPOILERS

Bottom line -  Unless you are new here you know that I love a good mystery.  Lisa Unger can craft a good mystery with the best of them.  Diverse and damaged characters are what make her novels so compelling and so hard to put down.

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