Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose . . .
March 8, 2022
Blurb: Scarlet’s life is pretty average. Overly protective mom. Great friends. Cute boy she’s interested in. And a father she’s never known—until she does.
When the FBI show up at Scarlet’s door, she is shocked to learn her father is infamous serial killer Jeffrey Robert Lake. And now, he’s dying and will only give the names and locations of his remaining victims to the one person, the daughter he hasn’t seen since she was a baby.
Scarlet’s mother has tried to protect her from Lake’s horrifying legacy, but there’s no way they can escape the media firestorm that erupts when they come out of hiding. Or the people who blame Scarlet for her father’s choices. When trying to do the right thing puts her life in danger, Scarlet is faced with a choice—go back into hiding or make the world see her as more than a monster’s daughter.
Scarlet lives a life of privilege in Connecticut with no idea of who the father was that “abandoned” her and her mother. When two FBI agents show up on her doorstep, she learns that her father is a serial killer who wants to see her before he dies of cancer in exchange for names of other victims who’ve never been discovered in Kate McLaughlin’s Daughter.
From the blurb, this sounds like it should be a fascinating novel, especially since I read a similar book recently. However, uneven writing, stilted dialogue, and lapses in logic plus a lack of suspense produce a book that quickly becomes melodramatic and somewhat icky. The beginning of the melodrama hinges on Scarlet’s identity being outed by her father, an event that I noted as soon as Scarlet adamantly declared her current name to her father. Certainly, she would have been briefed not to do that. Nor would FBI agents who have been surveilling her, following her around (why would they do that?), visit her house knowing that her mother wasn’t there. I won’t belabor the point or the dead horse. This one didn’t work for me.
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.