Friday, August 3, 2007

When Day Breaks by Mary Jane Clark

In When Day Breaks, news anchor Eliza Blake and her co-workers investigate and develop the news story about the death of their former co-worker, Constance Young. Constance has just landed a spot with the competition, but before she could start, her body was found dead in her swimming pool. As the number of suspects abound, the group has their work cut out for them.

This novel is a larger-than-life behind-the-scenes look at network news. I don’t know if this would classify as a cozy mystery, but it reads like one. Instead of the protagonist stepping into role of investigator (officially or unofficially) these characters investigate the crime/mystery in the course of their jobs. I was a little disturbed by the opening shocking prologue, but I soon got over that. The novel was fun and entertaining to read and completely captured my attention.

As a fan of CNN’s morning new program, American Morning, I was particularly fascinated by the fact that the reporters were getting information more quickly and ahead of the police. Very interesting.

Mary Jane Clark is the Queen of short chapters, in my opinion, managing to squeeze in 113 chapters in a mere 326 pages. Of course, other authors do this, but not all of them number the scene changes. I don’t really like putting down a book in mid-chapter, so these short chapters would allow me to read as little as a page when I had the time. With this book, though, I didn’t really put it down all that much. Once I picked it up, I wanted to read to the end to find out who the culprit was.

There are lots of interesting and unique characters in this book. My favourites were Eliza, Annabelle and Boyd. I really didn’t like Mack and Todd all that much, although they were very minor characters. I didn’t particularly care for Stuart either, but I did feel sorry for him. Constance treated him badly and really took advantage of him, while he was completely devoted to her.

I’d definitely recommend this book to cozy mystery lovers and those looking for a light read. It’d be perfect for the beach or a lazy afternoon in the hammock.

I’m looking forward to reading more books in the Sunrise Suspense Society series.

I got this book from the HarperCollins - Reading Group on MySpace.

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