Series: Pacific Northwest #2
Format Read: eGalley
Source: publisher in exchange for an honest review
Challenges: Cruisin' Through the Cozies, NetGalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge
Release Date: March 31, 2014
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | Kobo | Barnes & Noble |
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Blurb from goodreads:
After talking her way into a job writing for Portland's Northwest Extreme magazine, Meg Reed may now really be in over her head. Actually, about 8,000 feet over her head. . .
She's at Mount Hood's remote Silcox Hut, covering the the seriously hardcore Ridge Rangers-- Oregon's elite high-altitude rescue team--during their four-day winter training. Sure, Meg beefed up her outdoor skills over the summer . . . but she's still hoping to cover the event with some hot chocolate by the cheery fireplace. Then, during a sudden blizzard, she swears she hears gunshots. No one stranded in the hut believes her . . . until self-absorbed Ridge Ranger Ben Rogers is found outside in a pool of frozen blood. Meg's now got to find this killer quickly . . . before cabin fever does them all in.
I read several reviews of the first book and thought it sounded interesting. I grabbed this book when it became available and read it in one day. Now, I didn't love it, but it definitely kept me hooked. I'm not a sports person, I'm a pretty happy couch potato in fact, but the topic of extreme sports was appealing nonetheless. As it turns out, our heroine Meg is not particularly sporty either. A heroine I can relate to, yay! Well, she was relatable in some respects.
Meg is twenty-three and working at her first post-college job. While she really has little interest athletics or sports, she is a journalist with a passion for her work and her desire for a good story leads her to thorough research. She even took a survival course, which impressed me. She's all about the story but she doesn't forget about the people. She's ethical, hard-working, and compassionate. She's also flighty, emotional, and naive. There were times she grated on me and I had to remind myself that she was young, only twenty-three, and still maturing.
In addition to the main mystery involving the murder of the founder and financier of the Ridge Rangers, a high-altitude guiding team, there's a secondary story about the death eighteen months ago of Meg's father, also a reporter. In fact, at times it takes over the main mystery, and it's grittier, less cozy and more thriller. "Slayed on the Slopes" is an odd mix of cozy mystery, thriller, and chick lit. It contains a lot more drama than you typically see in a cozy mystery and part of that is due to the heroine's young age and part due to the overarching series plot concerning Meg's father. It was an uneasy mix at times but Dyer-Seeley has an eye for details and a knack for making you feel as if you there in the story. I enjoyed learning some of the survival techniques though I hope I never need them and I'm intrigued by the mystery around Meg's father.
Meg herself got on my nerves at times but she was enjoyable nonetheless and I really enjoyed the settings. She didn't put a lot of effort into solving the mystery of the Ridge Ranger but she definitely stuck her nose in and asked questions. The resolution of that mystery and the reveal of the killer were a surprise. Dyer-Seeley had lots of red herrings but the identity and motivation of the actual killer were completely out of left field; a little more ground work to make it believable would have been good. I had a hard time buying into who it was and why.
Overall, "Slayed on the Slopes" was entertaining and definitely not your typical cozy mystery. I will probably pick up the next book when it releases.