So today I finally got round to crossing a book off of my extensively long TBR pile. It’s been a while since I read anything by Gemma Halliday but I have previously liked her mystery series (High Heels Mysteries, Jamie Bond, Tahoe Tessie), so I don’t know if it’s just that I’m older now and therefore more aware,or if this is just a bad book, but unfortunately I didn’t enjoy this instalment.
Hollywood Deception is the fourth in the Hollywood Headlines Series. This instalment featured Allie Quick as she tried to solve the murder of Bobby Baxter – a talkshow host – in order to get the scoop on her article.
I almost didn’t read this book, I got a few chapters in and found Allie’s narrative to be quite irritating. I also disliked the negative example it set for young women. Allie is frequently talking about eating things that will go ‘straight to [her] thighs’ and generally about feeling guilty about eating/drinking certain things. This to me, really sets up a negative narrative for younger readers about having to feel guilty when you eat a cake – as long as you’re being healthy, eat what you want. I also disliked that the term ‘anorexic’ was used casually in one instance, just to provide comedic relief, which I found to be in poor taste.
The plot itself was fairly easy to follow, if a little slow at times while Allie is trying to put her case together. There were some intriguing twists and turns that I enjoyed – I just wish the narrative hadn’t been so cliched and irritating.
I don’t know what it’s like co-writing a novel, though I can imagine it’s hard. This could account for some of the inconsistencies within spellings (Brody was spelt a couple of different ways at one point), narrative tone, etc.
Overall, I was disappointed by this book as previously, Halliday’s novels have been a fun and engaging read. This however, just left me frustrated.
Have you read this novel or any of the author’s other books? Let me know in the comments!