“A Dead Daughter: Volume 3 (Jessica Huntington Desert Cities Mystery)” by Anna Celeste Burke is another excellent instalment in this entertaining and well written mystery series. The central character, Jessica Huntington, will appeal to many female readers. A middle aged divorced woman with style and standards she stands out of the crowd of often mindless chick-lit sleuth.
From the heart-felt dedication of the book we already know that youthful errors of judgements are a theme in the book and there are a few young people in need of rescue in this book.
The story itself begins with an intense, dramatic scene between Libby, the somewhat ‘mis-guided’ daughter of a client, and Jessica Huntington, where Libby reveals several secrets about her life and her shrink.
What follows is an adventurous investigation by the thoughtful and caring amateur detective Jessica. While the plot provides many humorous moments and great suspense and entertainment, it is those reflections on human nature and the caring nature of the author that make these books so rewarding in my eyes. A different strength of this book is the choice of characters: colourful, interesting and not always what you expect them to be.
After the first two books in the series this one doesn’t follow pure formula but shows that in a series each book can be as strong as the others with new ideas and without repetition.