Tuesday, June 12, 2012

First Chapter Review: Dead Reckoning by Caitlin Rother

The author got me a copy of this book last year because I had heard so many wonderful things about it. True crime has always fascinated me. Perhaps because I am interested in what motivates people to act as they do. I had planned to read it right away, but then my life got more chaotic than a cat dropped into the middle of a dog show.

BLURB:  Happy and retired, Tom and Jackie Hawks lived a charmed life in sunny Southern California. They were delighted when former child star Skylar Deleon and his pregnant wife Jennifer offered cash to purchase their 55-ft yacht The Well Deserved. But a trial voyage turned into a nightmare. Out at sea, the Hawkses begged for their lives as they were forced to sign everything over to Skylar. In return, they were tied to the ship's anchor and thrown overboard - alive...Skylar and Jennifer's twisted story became even more shocking when Skylar's unusual sexual motivations were revealed in court. After killing a man while out of jail on work furlough, he hired hits from prison on four witnesses, including his father...For this former child actor, the answer to "where are they now?" is Death Row.

COVER:  Spot on. A ripped from the headlines story, this cover gives the appearance of a ripped newspaper. The suspects' faces behind blood red splashed across the front and the entire back cover is just what I would expect.

FIRST CHAPTER: Dead Reckoning opens with family and friends of the Hawkses believing something must be wrong. The happy retired couple who were selling their boat so they could spend more time with their family, had not been in touch. Phone calls went right to voice mail. Emails remained unanswered. By November 23rd, family and friends began investigating.

Elsewhere, Betty Jarvi ponders her son's murder. She had not heard about the disappearance of Tom and Jackie Hawks, but her family's lives were on a collision course with the Hawkses' that she could never have imagined.

KEEP READING:  Definitely. As I said in the beginning, I am fascinated by true crimes. Rother opens with a prologue that introduces some of the people the reader will learn about in the rest of the book. It breaks my one-page prologue rule, but I have to admit I couldn't stop reading it. By the time I got to Chapter One, I had a glimpse into what would unfold later.

Rother made a wise choice in starting the book out with the family and friends who are impacted by the deaths of the Hawkses and JP Jarvi. This makes the story very personal and encourages sympathy from the reader. You get a basic amount of information on other members of the Hawkses' family and friends. The reader is also privy to how JP Jarvi was killed--not all the details, but enough to get you invested in the story.

I hope I can make room for this one in my schedule soon. I have 20 printed books I have agreed to review, so I am going in order as to how they came in. In between those are 31 books on my Kindle that need to be read. I'm not taking on any more titles until I am under 10 books total. Wish me luck!

Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation; 1 edition (February 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0786022175
ISBN-13: 978-0786022175
SRP: $6.99
Also available for Kindle

The publisher sent me a free paperback copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. A full review will follow. I have received no monetary compensation for this review.

1 comment:

Patty Woodland said...

Nasty former child star!

Nasty catpha!