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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.7 out of 5
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  • Interesting plot

    3.5 stars Perfect Little Dolls by Karen Long is the second in the Detective Eleanor Raven series.  Note that when it was originally published in 2014, it was titled "The Vault". Series Background:    (Warning – May contain spoilers from previous books) Detective Eleanor Raven works for the  Homicide Department of the Toronto Police Department.  Her boss, Chief Inspector Marty Samuelson has been her boss since she graduated over 10 years ago, and tries to support her.  Her long-time partner Mo has recently had a heart attack, but is now back part-time. The rest of her team consists of Wadesky, Timms, and her new partner Detective Laurence Whitefoot. My Synopsis:   (No major reveals, but if concerned, skip to My Opinions) Eleanor is still recovering from the kidnapping and torture that occurred 6 months ago.  Physically, her leg still throbs, and she has problems swallowing.  Her mind, however, is in worse shape.  As well, she cannot handle the fact that her new partner knows about her secret sex life.  She is back at work, but no one is sure that she should be. When the plasticized body of a young woman is found in the dump, the case promises to be bizarre.  As the body is finally identified as Giselle Baker, they track down both the bar where she worked, and her room-mate.  Other than finding out she supposedly had a rich boyfriend that no one had met,  they do find a strange wooden carving of a snake, and the room-mate tells them that someone had broken in and stole some baby skulls that Giselle had owned as well. When another woman goes missing, and then a small boy, Eleanor is sure they are tied together.  No one else is convinced. My Opinions:    I'm still confused as to this British author setting her series in Toronto Canada.  It would be okay if the detective (who uses British slang and words), would be identified as a British detective, but apparently she's Canadian.  Her old partner lost 4 stone.....we use pounds when talking about a persons weight in Canada....  The research done by the author is rather lacking.  If the stories weren't so good I'd throw in the towel.  I'm hoping her third novel will correct some of these issues. Characters are really important in a series, as in any book.  I didn't really like Eleanor in this one, and although I did not really consider her flawed in the first book, her demeanor in this one definitely had me re-thinking that.  I still think she is a very capable and strong-willed detective, whose heart is in the right place.  I love her boss.  However, I did not like the discord between Whitefoot and the team.  I was on Whitefoot's side most of the time. The plot was a little different, and quite dark, but it was good, as was the pace. I am looking forward to the next one!

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  • THRILLING police procedural

    AWESOME police procedural crime thriller involving the investigation of murdered women & the kidnapping of a young boy. Well written, great main characters (including Monster the German Sheppard who adds some enjoyable humor to the story) & suspense leading up to a terrific ending. RECOMMEND both books in this series & look forward to more. Thanks to NetGalley & Bookouture for this ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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  • A thrilling read

    Disappearance, murder, mystery and intrigue, Detective Inspector Eleanor Raven seems to have the odds stacked against her as she returns to her job and tries to prove to everybody, maybe especially herself, that she has everything under control. Perfect Little Dolls (previously published as The Vault), is the second instalment in the Detective Eleanor Raven series and had me immediately invested and caught up in its drama. Another book not for the faint hearted, Karen Long certainly ups the creepy factor in spades! In my review for book one, Cry for Mercy (The Safe Word), I stated that I struggled to connect with Eleanor but, she grew on me this time around. Complex, damaged, broken and flawed, she is actually quite unique. All up Perfect Little Dolls is a dark and compelling tale that will get under your skin. Well written, great characterisation and with twists and turns aplenty, makes this such a very thrilling read and I will be looking forward to the next instalment.

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  • Gripping, dark and dangerously twisted!

    Gripping, dark, and dangerously twisted, Karen Long has given birth to a horrifically fascinating tale! // Detective Eleanor Raven is definitely a favorite when it comes to roguish crime series leads! I just could not get enough of this leading lady! She has a defined love/hate personality; there's zero in between. I loved her myself; she has a wild temperament, but she means well and somehow usually always ends up being right! Her work with Dr. Seb and her internal, mental explorations was fascinating and showed growth within her character. I wasn't too fond of her partner, though; hopefully Whitefoot will grow on me in book three - now that he's (hopefully) started to actually understand and appreciate Eleanor. I did enjoy her ex-partner, turned advisor’s bits, and her boss’ support - it's nice to see this in a crime series. Additionally, the banter between characters Timms and Wadesky worked out brilliantly; their interactions helped break up the case(s) tension and generally just made me chuckle! I love a good set of characters! // I won't rehash the entire book blurb, but I will say this.. while told mainly from DI Raven's point of view, I enjoyed the author's creativity when it came to the killer's perspective. As the reader, the question was never who was responsible, but rather what, why, when, where, and how. I found this quite exciting, as many detective novels put the majority interest on who, but with this book, we get that pretty much right from the start when the narratives switch. // Perfect Little Dolls went farther than I'd imagined it would; I'll be having messed up nightmares for days! I am really looking forward to reading the next book in this series. I’m interested in finding out if Eleanor continues with her BDSM escapades, how her partnership with Whitefoot develops, and just what twisted tale Long comes up with next! // This is yet another Bookouture book that I'd be thrilled to recommend. Many thanks to NetGalley, the author Karen Long, and the publishers at Bookouture for my advanced copy of this ebook. I have honestly and voluntarily reviewed this title.

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  • Fantastic crime thriller couldn't put it down

    Perfect little dolls is a crime thriller, when a preserved dead body is found at a tip DI Eleanor Raven is called to the scene on her first day back to active duty. Eleanor is still recovering from her near death experience from her last case, she clearly still has issues. But Eleanor can see things others can't, when two more dead bodies and a young boy goes missing she suspects there's a link, however everyone else doubts her. I haven't read the first book in this series and after finishing this book and even knowing the outcome of the first one I will be adding it to my TBR list. I really enjoyed the writing style of this book. The narrative is in third person but yet I felt quite a personal connection to Eleanor and Toby. What I loved so much about this book is we know who they are looking for straight away as we get his story parallel to the investigation. I really felt the tension raising throughout the book. Would they make it in time or not. DI Eleanor Raven is a fantastic pragmatist she is not perfect by any means and has clear psychological issues. I found that made her character more endearing to me than if she was just this perfect detective. I loved the inclusion of her therapy sessions throughout the story. It really helped build a narrative surrounding her. The "bad guy" is an interesting choice. I felt quite a pull towards him as a troubled man who just wants love. But he also clearly was a sociopath. It's great honestly! I would totally recommend the perfect dolls, it reads well as a stand alone but I would definitely suggest reading the first book in the series if you are a lover of crime thrillers therefore when you read this one you won't read loads of spoilers. However saying that I haven't read the first book and I thoroughly enjoyed this book. If you are a fan of Katerina Diamond, Micheal Connelly or Belinda Bauer you will love this! Happy to rate 4 stars. Thank you to Netgalley, the publishers and author for the advanced digital copy in exchange for my fair and honest opinions.

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