Once Cold by Blake Pierce

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Once Cold is book#8 in the Riley Paige series and therein lies my problem for this review. When you start to read a book out of sequence, there may be things that you miss out on, like the growth of a particular character, the connection to some old mystery and sometimes why a character would behave the way he/she did. Such minute details can be understood only in following the order for a long standing series. There are books even in a series where such factors do not effect much as you would enjoy the mystery as it is but ‘Once Cold’, I believe belongs to the former category where the order of series is essential. Why I felt so, is because Riley’s character came across as not very likable for me. Some of her decisions felt selfish and as to using her position to uncover her mom’s killer again felt a little off. ‘Coz I couldn’t conceive the desperation for that act from the story, maybe I am missing out a chunk of it due to the aforementioned reason of out of sequence reading.

I did take up this book primarily for two reasons, one that I am huge fan of cold-case mysteries so when this popped up as recommended in my library list, I wanted to check it out. Secondly this was the first time I’m taking up an audio book, which I thought I can listen to when doing my chores. Unfortunately the plan went for a toss, as there was never any time like that where listening to it peacefully was an option , so after about 20%, I quit the audio and had to go back to reading the ebook🤪.

The cold case mystery of the Matchbook killer was interesting and even the camaraderie of Riley with her colleagues Bill and Jake was pleasing but by the end of the story, I am left with a single thought, Is Riley psychic?? Again maybe mentioned earlier, but there are quite a few instances where Riley does figure out the sequence of events during the murder by putting herself into the murderer’s shoes. Guessing the behavioral pattern of the killer is alright but finding clues by transporting her senses was too much for me to take in, especially coz I never felt there was a psychic angle in play.

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