Publication Date: November 29, 2012
In Dead Like Me by Kelly Miller, Tampa Detective Kate Springer returns to duty investigating a case of a murder of her thirteen-year-old doppelgänger. As she and her partner, Detective Patrick Jessup, dig into the murder, dark secrets from Kate’s past will be revealed and what seemed a coincidence, will seem less so. Can Kate solve the case and catch the killer before the killer catches her?
The author, Kelly Miller, gave me a copy of this novel in exchange for my review.
Garamond is such underused typeface. It’s solemn and dignified. It lends something to a dark story that Times New Roman and Arial just cannot begin to manage. If this seems an odd thought, it was the first one I had upon opening the electronic copy of Dead Like Me. “This is going to be a serious book,” I thought, “because look at the Garamond typeface.”
Dead Like Me is, indeed, a serious novel. Kate is a troubled character. She is one that does not convey emotion well, choosing to rely more on sarcasm. Some readers would call this a shallow character that we don’t get to know, but as her life opens, we are able to see Kate as real and more relatable. She has spent her life keeping secrets, so in telling the story, why would she tell the reader everything?
There are times in which the secrecy stretches the bounds of believability in the plot line. Why would a grown woman, a cop, no matter what has happened to her, make some of the story-motivating choices she does? Those are stopping points in the novel but not necessarily deal breakers for the reader. We’re to believe she’s strong, capable and smart, so why the contrived moments? As readers, I think we apply that to a first-time author and credit Miller with the moments that show what a talent she will be when her craft is fully honed. Along with the bad choices, she makes some very good ones that balance readability of Dead Like Me in a way which not only entertains but keeps a reader locked in until the end.
With the exception of Patrick, none of the background characters are developed beyond what we see when we meet them. As the story is told in the first person, this shallow development is not hard to believe. As the main character is a cop, we expect her to reach beyond the surface.
Overall Dead Like Me is a very readable work. I wouldn’t call this novel the best thing I’ve ever read but if presented with a follow-up, I wouldn’t hesitate to check it out. If you are a fan of police procedural works or thrillers, check this one out and let me know what you think.
Dead Like Me was a semifinalist in The Kindle Book Review’s 2013, Best Indie Book Awards competition.
Read an excerpt and buy Dead Like Me by Kelly Miller on