Merissa Karr is a wealthy young woman who isn’t happy to sit back and live off of her inheritance. She has a passion for urban renewal that she’s been able to nurture through her work with the Morgan Consulting Group. Merissa is driving around one day with her boss, Dennis Morgan, checking out the next neglected part of Tacoma they want to revitalize when he’s shot and she has no idea who did it.
Billie Mitchell is a mounted police officer in Tacoma who’s finally put most of the demons of war behind her. Her experiences have made her one of the best the force has to offer when it comes to working with victims who are shaken up by terrible experiences. When Dennis Morgan is murdered in her neighbourhood, she’s brought in to speak to Merissa and see if she can help her remember anything that could help them find the killer.
Merissa takes to Billie right away, which is a good thing because when it appears Merissa might be the killer’s next target, Billie is assigned to bodyguard her. They both know the last thing they should be doing is falling for each other, but the more time they spend together, the less they seem to be able to help it.
While I wouldn’t necessarily say this is an opposites attract romance, I liked how different Merissa and Billie are from each other and how they work through their feelings in light of that. They’re both very likeable and I found myself fully invested in their journeys individually and as a couple all the way through the story.
Some of the characters from the last two installments in the series appear in this one as side characters. I haven’t read those books, but I had no trouble understanding who they were, and now I want to go back and read their stories!
The Writing Style
I’m not typically into mysteries, so it worked out well for me that the romance was as prominent as the mystery element of this book. It was paced well and quite interesting, and I found myself occasionally yelling at characters “no, you idiot!” because I didn’t want them to get hurt doing something that I thought they shouldn’t be doing.
I was a little wary when I saw that Hollis Elizabeth was the narrator for this book because I’d tried listening to one with her before and the narration just didn’t work for me. I’m so glad I tried it out anyway though, because she did a fabulous job with this one! She differentiated the characters well, the men’s voices worked as well as the women’s, and I never found my mind wandering. I’d highly recommend the audio for this book and I’ll be looking forward to hearing more books narrated by Hollis Elizabeth in the future.
Great characters, excellent narration, solid pacing, interesting mystery, lovely romance. Everything worked for me!
I don’t know that this is actually a con, but I was pretty sure I knew who the bad guy was before the big reveal.
If you like books that balance mystery and romance really well, you should definitely get this book. If you’re at all inclined to listen to audiobooks, I especially recommend it in that format because Hollis Elizabeth did a fabulous job of bringing Karis Walsh’s words to life.
Excerpt from Amounting to Nothing by Karis Walsh
“Shitty day, isn’t it?” The woman stopped next to Merissa’s chair, no trace of the placating smiles others had worn. She carried with her a faintly spicy and sweet scent. Merissa couldn’t quite define what it was, but she inhaled deeply and exhaled with a sigh, glad to have the momentary break from stale police precinct air.
“Yes,” Merissa said. A simple answer, but she was as relieved by the honest words as by the respite from the sweaty, ferrous aromas of death and fear that she’d been living in for the past hours. No Are you doing okay? and Yes, I’m fine lies to suffer through.
“I’m Billie. I’m going to drive you around the neighborhood. I know it will be hard to be back where the shooting happened, but maybe something will jog your memory.”
Merissa shook her head. Why go through all this when it was hopeless? “I didn’t see anything until…after. I’m sorry, but I’d rather not—”
Billie put her hand on Merissa’s shoulder and stopped her words with gentle pressure. “Don’t apologize. Our minds can play tricks on us, making us forget what we actually remember. You might have seen or heard something that you don’t realize will be important to us. Any clues we can discover will help us find who did this to your friend.”
“Okay,” Merissa said. She was distracted by the feel of Billie’s touch. She felt a shiver pulse through her at the contact, and Billie must have interpreted it as discomfort because she pulled her hand back.
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Amounting to Nothing
Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781626397286
- Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
- Audiobook Publisher: Bold Strokes Books Inc
- Narrator: Hollis Elizabeth
Karis Walsh Online
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