What I'd Do For Love - Review
What I'd Do For Love had me on the hook pretty quick and in a big way. The main character, Greer, was an office manager in a family health practice. She was smart, good looking, and interesting. She was certainly likable enough that even when she killed her husband in cold blood I was ready to overlook it. Greer had experienced some rough times and I wanted to like her. I wanted to root for her.
"A woman scorned is a dangerous woman. Greer Patterson always felt like an outsider. Loathed by her step mother and half siblings for being the green eyed, fair skinned product of her black father's affair with a white woman; she's never truly felt loved by anyone except her father and husband Michael. When Greer's life as she knows it comes crashing down after discovering her husband's torrid affair, she decides to take matters into her own bloody hands. Soon, after sending Michael to his untimely death and framing his mistress, she begins feeling something she's never felt before...powerful. Now, with a new found confidence and the freedom, if she can stay out of jail, she's determined to stop anything and anyone from standing in the way of true love again!"
Greer seemed to be trying to get it together despite the traumas of her past. Murdering her husband was sort of a culmination of her saying she wasn't going to take crap from anyone anymore. I kind of understood that and respected her for being so motivated to sort things out. I liked the premise of What I'd Do For Love and was keen to see where it would lead.
There was a decent amount of action in the first few chapters of What I'd Do For Love. That was what hooked me in and kept me going.
K.F. Johnson's writing started out fairly tight. It was mostly error free. There was a formatting issue right at the start, in the dedication, with the text highlighted in white (visible to people reading in night mode). There were also three apostrophe errors on the first page. And most distracting throughout was that numbers were always written as numbers, rather than words.
The next fifty percent of the book, after those early chapters, dragged a little. The mistakes in the writing also escalated. There were incorrect tenses, superfluous words, incorrect words, turns of phrase reproduced incorrectly, apostrophes in the wrong places, and speech marks missing. My recommendation to the author would be to find a new proofreader, as this could have otherwise been error free.
[I've since caught up with author K.F. Johnson and she's sent her book back past the editor]
What I'd Do For Love was written mostly in the first person, which isn't always my favorite. It does tend to lead to more of a focus on what's inside the character's head rather than actions. And this happened here. After the murder of her husband the pace of action needed to be sustained more than it was. Showing the character's thoughts through her actions and dialogue, would have kept the story moving forward at a pace that kept me fully gripped.
The point of view did change in one chapter to Greer's half-sister, and I thought I was going to be character hoping the rest of the book. Thankfully, it was just the once and the point of view stayed with Greer for the remainder of the book.
It was written in the past tense, which is always a preference for me. It put the descriptions on solid ground, rather than that dreamy feeling you get with descriptions written in the present tense.
Greer's character did feel like she was developing throughout the length of the book. Although I got a sense it was more that her true character was revealed over time rather than her changing as a person. I was definitely disturbed by the growing darkness and vindictiveness in her. I found myself not liking her in the way that I had at the beginning. I was no longer rooting for her and instead was begging for her to be caught. I believe this was the intention and the main theme of the book.
Some peril was introduced towards the very end, where the possibilities of her getting caught were mounting up. I'd like to have seen more of this from the outset while I still favored Greer. This way it would have been so much more tantalizing as I began to want her to get caught. Early on, there were a few things that were hinted at, which could have put her in peril but they weren't really revisited until much later on. There was also the whole police investigation that was skipped over. Given the devious nature of Greer's character, I'd have loved to have seen her in the interrogation room, and a few cops grilling her.
All the characters were believable, although I still maintain Greer was pretty disturbing.
I quite enjoyed What I'd Do For Love but wished it had delivered more peril and thrills throughout the middle section. If that had happened, and it had been largely error free, then I'd rate this as four stars out of five. But as it stands I have to rate it as a solid three stars.
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