Dead Perfect by Noelle Holten #bookreview #DeadPerfect #NetGalley

A murdered woman…
When the body of a young woman is found in a local park, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she’s dealing with no ordinary killer.  The murder victim has been disfigured; her outfit changed to resemble someone else.  Someone Maggie knows all too well…her close friend Dr Kate Moloney.
A determined detective…
Maggie is determined to keep her friend safe, but with Kate already struggling with a threatening stalker, Maggie now fears Kate’s life is in real danger.  Who else would want to harm Kate and why else would the killer be turning his victims into exact replicas – his living dolls? 
Can Maggie find the depraved killer?  Or will Kate become his next living doll?

💜💜💜💜.5

Hi and welcome to my review of Dead Perfect, the third instalment in the DC Maggie Jamieson series.

I read Dead Inside last year and its successor, Dead Wrong, was one of my 20 books of summer. I KNEW I wouldn’t be able to wait until October to read Dead Perfect, and I was right: as I write this it’s early September, I took a wee reviewing break, and as soon as I felt ready to read a book up for review I picked up Dead Perfect.

As mentioned, Dead Perfect is the third book in a series. Although the story can be read as a standalone, I really do believe it helped me that I’d read the previous books, not so much for the story but for the characters, especially Maggie and where she’s coming from. With her friend Kate’s life in danger, Maggie’s anguish about Kate’s well-being positively leapt from the pages and I totally got that, because I was there to watch her feelings for Kate grow in Dead Wrong. Had I not witnessed that, I might have felt like she was overreacting, like she should get a grip? As it stands, I just wanted to hug her and tell her that everything would be fine. Although I sincerely had my doubts about that, as I’ve noticed that this is an author who has few qualms about putting her characters through the ringer!

Having read Dead Inside, it was so nice to see Lucy again, find out what she’s been up to in the meantime, and having read Dead Wrong, it was great to reassess my hopes and expectations. The thing I was hoping for did not come to fruition, and with the new information I gathered it looks as though it never will, but on the other hand, the thing I was afraid of happening also did not happen, so there’s that.

Like its predecessors, Dead Perfect has short chapters that propel the story forwards, and never failed to lure me into the oh-just-one-more-chapter trap, as a consequence I raced through it. This is easily the most suspenseful instalment of the three so far, I was invested throughout, and those last 100 pages or so had me on tenterhooks. After a loooooong day at work, curling up on the sofa with Dead Perfect was such a treat and I had to fight myself to put it down and get some sleep, instead of racing through the last chapters in search of the reveal. I was DYING to know whodunnit, but I also wanted to savour that last part, not rush it while fighting off sleep.

Well I’ve finished it and that big reveal came as quite a surprise, which is really rather astonishing because I’d actually had that particular person in my crosshairs, I was SO SURE at one point, but I let them go because I got carried away by other events and people and deftly positioned red herrings, making me lose sight of my suspect, well done Noelle!

Dead Perfect is erm… well… a dead perfect police procedural, really. I thoroughly enjoyed it, start to finish, it has heart, it has suspense, and whenever the fourth instalment is due to be published it’s too late cos this little Belgian book lover needs it NOW! Recommended!

Dead Perfect is out in eBook format on 16 October and in paperback on 24 December. Pre-order your copy now!

Thanks to HarperCollins UK (One More Chapter) and NetGalley for the review copy. All opinions are my own.

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