Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Blow-Up Man by Nina Blakemore

Annette Dolce feels betrayed by life and by the father of her two illegitimate children. She is the mother of twin girls, Ella and Emma – who couldn’t be more different from each other in personality. Emma takes after her mother; Ella, her father. The girls’ father, Dr. Todd Davis, Ph.D., is a professor at the local university. He has recently found success in his pharmacological research on a new drug for treating prostate cancer, and his love life when he falls in love with his student, and much younger woman, Dr. Faye Brady.

Annette and daughter, Emma, don’t accept Todd’s new liaison nor his subsequent marriage and make no secret of their displeasure. Ella is accepting but is the scapegoat for the unhappiness and frustration of her mother and sister. When the local lifestyle magazine publishes a big spread on the new super-couple, Dr. & Dr. Davis, and “their” daughters, Annette goes off the deep end and plans to get revenge for all her past perceived insults, injuries, and betrayals.

The Blow-Up Man by Nina Blakeman was a suspense-filled story of a madwoman scorned. Fast-paced with interesting characters in a rural West Texas location (which I loved!) The author’s descriptions of the various settings were vivid and creepy, yet familiar. (Like the author, I, too, am a Texan.) The plot incorporates intense scenes of torture and child abuse.

Good, strong secondary characters in Faye’s mother, Madeline; Annette’s live-in boyfriend, Angel; an obnoxious and privileged med student, Matthew Nolan; and the new priest in town, Father Sweeney all add depth and help to advance the story. Cool medical terminology lent a feeling of authenticity and genuineness but some of the details of the research were a little much for me on occasion.

I highly recommend this tense and highly readable novel for those that like their suspense “gritty.” I was pleased to see mentioned somewhere online that there is a sequel in the works. Yay!

I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

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