Title: DEEP DOWN DEAD
Author: Steph Broadribb
Publisher: Orenda Books
Genre: Murder-Mystery | Crime
Lori Anderson is as tough as they come, managing to keep her career as a fearless Florida bounty hunter separate from her role as single mother to nine-year-old Dakota, who suffers from leukaemia. But when the hospital bills start to rack up, she has no choice but to take her daughter along on a job that will make her a fast buck. And that’s when things start to go wrong. The fugitive she’s assigned to haul back to court is none other than JT, Lori’s former mentor—the man who taught her everything she knows … the man who also knows the secrets of her murky past.
Not only is JT fighting a child exploitation racket operating out of one of Florida’s biggest theme parks, Winter Wonderland, a place where ‘bad things never happen’, but he’s also mixed up with the powerful Miami Mob. With two fearsome foes on their tails, just three days to get JT back to Florida, and her daughter to protect, Lori has her work cut out for her. When they’re ambushed at a gas station, the stakes go from high to stratospheric, and things become personal.
WHAT I THOUGHT
DEEP DOWN DEAD by British author, Steph Broadribb, just oozes authenticity so much so you can almost smell the burnt rubber on the asphalt, and the cordite smoke after each shoot out. It’s one of those rare books that when started, is almost impossible to put down. A page-flipping, tense, action-packed crime thriller, that will leave you breathless. Indeed, the frantic pace is one long roller coaster ride that doesn’t stop until the last page, with an ending that says: ‘This ain’t over yet, honey!’ And that there is plenty more where this came from.
A fact that makes me so happy. Because, simply put, the characters of Lori and JT are so well written, they draw you straight into the tangled story that Broadribb has crafted for them, tailor-made down to the last detail. This is not just a simple case of bails-bond Lori Anderson going to collect a ‘Jumper’ but so much more complex when the Jumper turns out to not only be her mentor, but someone she fell in love with. Throw in a couple of wrenches in the guise of the Miami Mafia on the hunt for JT, but also a pedophile group hell bent on silencing him, and Lori—Momma Bear—has her hands full staying one step ahead. And keeping her, and JT alive, long enough to save Lori’s daughter, Dakota, who’s been kidnapped.
And, as these guys find out the hard way, you don’t mess with a Momma Bear and come between her and her child!
From the crisp, snappy banter, to the subtext and romantic tension between JT and Lori, to the dynamics of a plot that twists and turns at every corner, everything clicks into place perfectly. DEEP DOWN DEAD is one hell of a satisfying read, with one kick-ass, memorable heroine in Lori Anderson; a woman who just doesn’t know how to give up, when fighting to save her child’s life.
A thrilling 4-STAR debut outing. If this doesn’t leave you wanting more, then I don’t know what will.