Please note I am reviewing this book for fun - it is not a compensated post! I read A LOT and thought it would be fun to add book reviews to my blog for other readers out there & maybe inspire some others to pick up a good book. By doing this, I hope to share the good, the bad and all those books that fall somewhere in between with you.
Secrets to the Grave is the follow-up to Deeper Than Dead. I love Tami Hoag, she writes a great mystery/thriller and I really enjoyed Deeper Than Dead so reading this one was a given.
Here is a quick excerpt from Amazon:
Marissa Fordham had a past full of secrets, a present full of lies. Everyone knew of her, but no one knew her.
When Marissa is found brutally murdered, with her young daughter, Haley, resting her head on her mother's bloody breast, she sends the idyllic California town of Oak Knoll into a tailspin. Already on edge with the upcoming trial of the See- No-Evil killer, residents are shocked by reports of the crime scene, which might not have been discovered for days had it not been for a chilling 911 call: a small child's voice saying, "My daddy hurt my mommy."
Sheriff's detective Tony Mendez faces a puzzle with nothing but pieces that won't fit. To assist with his witness, Haley, he calls teacher-turned-child advocate Anne Leone. Anne's life is hectic enough-she's a newlywed and a part- time student in child psychology, and she's the star witness in the See-No-Evil trial. But one look at Haley, alone and terrified, and Anne's heart is stolen.
As Tony and Anne begin to peel back the layers of Marissa Fordham's life, they find a clue fragment here, another there. And just when it seems Marissa has taken her secrets to the grave, they uncover a fact that puts Anne and Haley directly in the sights of a killer: Marissa Fordham never existed.
I would rate this book 4/5 stars. The story gripped me from the very beginning with the horrific murder of single mom Marissa Fordham and her left for dead innocent 4 yr. old daughter Hayley. It is not for the faint of heart - as it depicts a pretty gruesome knife murder. What got me was the daughter, being a mom of 2 lil girls around the same age - I really felt for her!
Actually I love the main characters in this series - Tony, Vince & Anne - and I was happy to embark on another murder mystery with them.
I did not give the book 5 stars because I did figure out who the killer was about half way through but I still enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot and the way they made you doubt if you were correct. I was correct by the way! I am a pretty good sleuth if I may say so myself, lol! It must come from all the books I read and crime drama shows I watch! :)
What I really enjoy about this series is that it actually takes place in the mid 80's before all the modern technology we have today to assist in crime solving. They actually have to spend hours tracking people down the old fashioned way - no DNA, computers or instant google search here!
This definitely allows for a greater sense of danger - no quick help on the way via cell phone call, etc...
I would love for this series to continue - I enjoyed seeing the development of Anne & Vince's relationship and would definitely like to read more involving them.
If you are into mystery/thrillers - I would definitely recommend this one! I don't think you need to have read Deeper Than Dead to read or enjoy it but it definitely does give you a reference point for things that come up in this book. There are a few back stories that started with the first book and continue here.
Let me know if you have read Secrets to the Grave or if you do later! Would love to hear your thoughts!