Ellie Matthews is a criminalist, in a personal relationship with FBI Agent Vic Manetti. The two have just started running together, but their first competitive race is cut short with the discovery of a body of a runner murdered the night before.
The local sheriff’s department asks for Ellie’s help again (her last case was quite personal) and she’s teaming up with Detective Nick Baxter, despite a very strained personal and professional relationship between the two.
Ellie is struggling in her personal life – with her relationships with Vic Manetti and Nick Baxter, and with alcohol. She’d turned to the bottle in the last book and now she’s trying hard to keep her head straight, but the killer will be working to get under Ellie’s skin. If everyone is to survive, Ellie will need to stay sober and keep her wits about her – which may be more difficult than it sounds.
Author Caroline Fardig’s Java Jive series was a top-notch cozy mystery series (one of the very few ‘cozy’s’ that I read and enjoyed) but with the mystery series, Fardig has gotten more than just a little bit darker. Not only are the murders more gruesome and the murderers more threatening, but the personal issues that our protagonist, Ellie Matthews, is dealing with are also just a bit harsher.
This book has two stories going – one, the murder to be solved, is a strong mystery that will keep the reader on edge and guessing all the way to the end – but I may have found the other story – that of Ellie’s personal relationships with Manetti and Baxter – even more interesting. And the problems surround the second story definitely impacts Ellie’s ability to work on the first.
This is really a tightly woven story that is extremely well paced. The further we get in to it, the more anxiety we feel as readers, wondering which relationship will crack first and whether or not everyone will come through to the end of the book.
If you like mysteries, I really encourage you to seek out Caroline Fardig’s Ellie Matthews Mystery Series. You don’t need to have read the first two books in the series to enjoy this, but you will want to read them because they are good.
Looking for a good book? Dead Sprint by Caroline Fardig is a fast-paced, excellent mystery with an interesting, flawed protagonist who works as hard on her personal life as she does solving murders. Read it.
I received a digital copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
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author: Caroline Fardig
series: Ellie Matthews Mystery #3
publisher: Caroline Fardig
ebook, 302 pages