📖Wild Flower Graves by Rita Herron

Detective Ellie Reeves is hiking in the Appalachian Mountains when she discovers a body. As dusk falls, a gust of wind blows some petals on to Ellie’s path. Following the trail, she finds a golden-haired young woman dead on a bed of daffodils, with a note: Monday’s child is fair of face.

Thanks to her own past, the childhood she tries her hardest to forget, Ellie knows that the wilderness––and its shadows––is the perfect hunting ground for a criminal. She’s certain that the sinister nursery rhyme, written with an old-fashioned typewriter, means something.

It soon becomes clear when another body is found. Under the light of the moon, Ellie spots wildflower petals floating in a river. On the bank lies Tuesday’s child, another young woman who lost her life, far too soon, at the hands of a monster.

Ellie is up against a serial killer who will claim a victim for every day of the week. In the next twenty-four hours there will be another death, and when her own house is broken into, daffodil petals strewn across the floor, it’s clear the ruthless murderer has Ellie in his sights. Can she save more innocent women from his clutches? Or will he get to her first?

I was so pleased to see that the character of Ellie didn’t just bounce back from the events of the first book – like so many female detectives written by men do!

It was an interesting plot idea that worked better than I originally thought and definitely kept me guessing throughout.

There are a lot of complicated characters. Ellie for starters barely gets to breathe before the murders start happening. With all that happened to her in the first book, it seemed almost unfair to see her through the trials of this book – though it did make for some good reading.

FBI Agent Derrick is back. He makes for a good counterpart to Elle and they play off each other well. I haven’t completely made my mind up about him yet and the book does a very good job of keeping a little mystery surrounding the characters.

Speaking of mystery, we get to learn a little more about Cord, through much of him remains a mystery. He definitely hits the ‘tall, dark, brooding’ stereotype. The dynamic between Cord, Ellie, and Derrick is at odds and will be interesting to see how that progresses.

The plot points the finger at many characters and I honestly had strong theories about each one. Did I get it right? No, but I still found the reveal of the killer to be entertaining.

With the events of book 1 still lingering in the background of book 2, it will be interesting to see how Ellie is presented in book 3 and what she brings with her from her latest trauma.

I always find it far more compelling to read about a strong female character who is unashamed of trauma/baggage and of a writer who is able to show all ups and downs of life.

I give this book: ✨✨✨✨✨

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