Book Review: Life Without Parole – Clare O’Donohue

Title: Life Without Parole
Author: Clare O’Donohue
ISBN: 9780452297821
Pages: 288
Release Date: April 24, 2012
Publisher: Plume
Genre: Mystery
Source: Publisher
Rating: 4 out of 5

Summary:

Television producer Kate Conway still hasn’t gotten over the death of her husband, Frank. Okay, her then-soon-to-be-ex-husband. That had been cheating on her for quite some time before they decided to divorce. There’s no reason Kate should be pining over him, but it doesn’t change the fact that she’s alone and isn’t motivated to move on with her life. That is, until she receives two new jobs: one is a documentary on prisoners in for life who have no hope of parole, while the other is on a restaurant that will be opening soon. But when someone involved with the restaurant is murdered, Kate uses what she can learn from the prisoners about the minds of murderers to help solve the case.

Review:

Life Without Parole, the sequel to Missing Persons, has two main storylines, both of which are interesting in their own ways. For those who enjoyed the information about Kate being a television producer in Missing Persons, it’s the prisoner documentary that will be the most fascinating. From the restrictions Kate and her team face when they’re in with murderers to the profile given of the mind that would commit a murder, the storyline is fascinating from beginning to end. It takes a chilling turn as the book progresses, and for me, it was definitely the more interesting storyline of the two.

However, it’s the restaurant opening that has Kate personally involved, rather than professionally. Sure, she’s brought in because of a job, but she takes it upon herself to figure out the identity of the murderer. This storyline is done well, but it’s more of a straightforward mystery. It doesn’t have the juicy bits of information that the prisoner plot does, but it’s still well-written and engaging. Kate’s a great main character, though her character doesn’t develop much further in this book, so any project she embarks on is interesting.

It’s not really necessary to read Life Without Parole and Missing Persons in order. As always, readers would miss out on some character development and background plot if they treated Life Without Parole as a standalone, but O’Donohue explains everything necessary in this book. If you’re not interested in picking up another series book, you could easily read this book without the first.

Overall, Life Without Parole was an enjoyable read. O’Donohue has embarked on an interesting series with a great premise with these books. Kate’s an appealing, realistic character, and readers will look forward to seeing where the author takes her next.

Other books by Clare O’Donohue:

Missing Persons

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Comments

  1. I am always up for a good mystery…so many books, so little time.

  2. I am always up for a good mystery…so many books, so little time.

  3. Yay! I liked Missing Persons a lot and just picked this one up from the library. Good to see you liked the second book in the series.

  4. Yay! I liked Missing Persons a lot and just picked this one up from the library. Good to see you liked the second book in the series.

  5. I am not sure this one is for me, but if I did go ahead with it, I would want to read Missing Persons right before reading this one. I love it when authors writing a series develop their characters over consecutive books. Great review today, Swapna.

  6. I am not sure this one is for me, but if I did go ahead with it, I would want to read Missing Persons right before reading this one. I love it when authors writing a series develop their characters over consecutive books. Great review today, Swapna.

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