Friday, November 28, 2014

Louisiana Fever, (Andy Broussard/Kit Franklyn Mystery #5)

By +D.J. Donaldson
A Mystery & Suspense Novel
**Book provided by the author for an honest review**

Rated it

Blurb:  During an Ebola-like viral outbreak in New Orleans identical to the one chronicled in the best-seller The Hot Zone, Chief Medical Examiner Andy Broussard and criminal psychologist Kit Franklyn find that the lethal epidemic is not the only killer stalking the Big Easy.  When Kit Franklyn receives a mysterious invitation to Grandma O's famous Cajun restaurant along with one long-stemmed yellow rose, she can't resist the urge to discover the identity of her suitor.  At the restaurant, she approaches a table where an older gentleman is waiting with another rose.  He stands, speaks her name, and keels over dead.  Who is this stranger?  And why do her parents seem to be holding something back when she tells them the story?  Broussard's autopsy of the dead man uncovers the presence of a deadly virus that causes its victims to bleed to death in a matter of days- a virus for which there is no known cure.  While conducting an investigation into the dead man's identity, Kit and her longtime boyfriend, Teddy LaBiche, disappear.

Another corpse shows up in the early stages of the same disease as the first victim, but with ligature marks around his neck and bearing a clue to Kit and Teddy's whereabouts.  Broussard's race to save Kit and Teddy and stop the spread of the virus results in a chilling confrontation with a brilliant, extremely violent psychopath deep in the Louisiana bayou, revealing the lengths to which a family will go to keep its dark secrets.

Review:  This story follows a medical examiner, Andy Broussard, and his colleague, and friend,  Kit Franklyn, a criminal psychologist in New Orleans.  After a man collapses and dies right in front of Kit in a restaurant after arranging to meet her there, the mystery begins.  Not only is Kit baffled about who he is and why he wanted to meet her, Andy's autopsy on the man reveals strange findings that don't fit.  During Kit's investigation to find out who this man was and where he came from, she is lead to the docks and questioning the shipyard workers in hopes they know him.  Along for the ride, Teddy, Kit's boyfriend, accompanies her to head the investigation.  

While they are still trying to figure what the "John Doe" died from, another body comes in with the same findings.  During the autopsy an assistant cuts herself and is exposed to the corpse's bodily fluids.  Kit goes missing, and Andy is none the wiser of the true nature of these deaths.  The story only continues to get more complicated and bizarre and will blow your mind!

As a first time reader of this author and also this series, I felt pretty in tune with the characters, even though I did not know their beginnings/background.  As I was introduced to Kit, she lives in a mansion rent free for three years thanks to a friend of a friend who's going to be out of the country for that period.  Along with her dog, Lucky, they are anxiously awaiting her boyfriend, Teddy.  Teddy seems like a pretty decent guy.  Teddy seems to truly care for Kit, and they have a wonderful relationship.  The only part I had a negative reaction to is when Kit fed her dog Lucky grapes.......the veterinary technician in me winced hard!

The supporting characters in the book were very colorful and even lovable at times.  Grandma O and her grandson, Bubba, the owner of Grandma O's restaurant, were so sweet and caring, especially toward Kit and Andy, and it was pretty endearing.  Also the fact that Grandma O has visions is an awesome twist!  Go Grandma!!  Nick Lawson, crime reporter for the Times-Picayune, came off sleezy at first but then redeems himself in the end of the book with his heroics, so I wouldn't walk the other way when I saw him coming anymore.  :)  Natalie and Guy, the medical examiner's assistants contribute a lot to the storyline, but I didn't get much personal background on them to be able to love or hate them.  They were just there, did their job and were ok.  Of course, I sympathized with them when tragedy struck, so I guess that says something.  

The simple fact that this book followed a medical examiner, so most of the time they were in a hospital setting, was pretty fascinating and intriguing.  I was able to follow the autopsy with the medical examiner and listen to his inner thoughts when trying to figure out what was going on, and that came across very realistic with regard to the knowledge and workings of a real medical examiner.  The build up of trying to find Kit and Teddy and to put the pieces together with the deaths was excruciatingly painful at times!  Sometimes, I did feel like there was too much detail which, in turn, made it feel like the climax took longer, but as I neared the end, I realized if it hadn't been written like that, it wouldn't have felt realistic anymore.  I really enjoyed the story and it's characters!  I think this guy should write CSI episodes 'cause he seems more knowledgeable than the people that write for that show now!

Louisiana Fever

Available Now On:

Amazon and  B&N

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  1. After reading this book, are you considering going back to the previous books? It sounds like a reader could pick up any book and enjoy it without having started at the beginning. I like those kinds of series.

  2. IDK yet. But yes, I did like the fact that it wasn't hard to follow considering I hadn't read the previous ones.