One Small Sacrifice by Hilary Davidson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I saw Hilary Davidson at Bouchercon in 2011 when she was promoting her first novel. She had some interesting things to say so I made a mental note to get a copy. 8 years later I finally got around to reading her 5th novel.
Hey, I’ve been busy!
Alex Traynor went to a war zone as a photojournalist and came back to New York with a whopping case of PTSD that had him self-medicating with the help of his friend and drug dealer, Cori. Unfortunately, Cori died after falling off the roof Alex’s apartment under suspicious circumstances. NYPD detective Sheryn Sterling is convinced that Alex killed Cori in the midst of a drug fueled freakout, but Alex’s girlfriend Emily provided an alibi. However, now Emily has gone missing while Alex relapsed and had a lost weekend. Sterling is determined to not let Alex get away with it again, but Alex has no memory of what happened to Emily. So where is she?
This is a nice take on a mystery because we’ve got a dogged detective pursuing the truth even as her prime suspect is doing the same, and for a good chunk of the story we’re not sure which one of them we should be rooting for. There’s some good twists, and the ultimate resolution manages the tricky task of not being obvious while not entirely coming out of left field either. I particularly liked one of the bigger revelations we get at the end.
It’s a little repetitive in spots as if Davidson doesn’t entirely trust the reader to remember the characters' histories, but it doesn’t get annoying. It’s also just a shade too long with an extra bit at the end that I didn’t really need, but again, it’s not too much to overlook.
I’d go 3.5 if I could, but I’ll round up to 4 since it took me way too long to finally check out Davidson’s work. Better late than never.
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