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Moonlighting for Murder: Posed for Murder

April 7, 2011

In order to draw attention to unsolved murders, struggling photographer Lydia McKenzie recreates the crime scenes, complete with models as corpses, in her photos.  She attempts to be as accurate as possible with the setting, clothing, and even the way the model is posed.

Lydia has secured a showing at a local gallery and is excited and nervous on opening night.  She is shocked when the police make an appearance and inform her that one of her models has been murdered and left exactly the way she is posed in Lydia’s photograph of her.

Lydia is questioned by the police and feels somewhat responsible, especially when more of her models are threatened.   When it seems the police are making very little progress, she decides it’s time to take matters into her own hands.

Meredith Cole won the Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Mystery Novel Competition with her book Posed for Murder.   I’ve read several great reviews of the book and decided it would be fun to feature in this year’s Moonlighting for Murder theme week.   This is another case where I think I had my expectations set too high when I went into the book.  While I liked it, I didn’t love it the way I’d hoped to.  I found the writing to be oddly formal, which kept the characters at an arm’s length.   I wanted to know Lydia’s emotions and feel her fear and that didn’t come across to me.

The mystery is fairly easy to figure out.  That didn’t bother me, but it might if you like to be kept guessing until the end.  I found this to be a quick read and, although I didn’t love it, I’d like to read the next book in the series since I think Cole’s writing shows a lot of potential.

32 Comments leave one →
  1. April 7, 2011 5:18 am

    What a creepy premise! I am sorry to hear that the book isn’t that good. I will still give it a try since I like discovering new mystery authors.

  2. April 7, 2011 6:07 am

    There was a film in the 70’s that had a similar storyline,I am sure. Oh I wish I could remember what it was called. Only remember the actress who played the mum in Mommie Dearest took the role as a photographer, whose pictures were used as murder scenes.

  3. April 7, 2011 6:30 am

    I agree that the premise sounds original and I might give it a try for that reason alone. Plus I could use it for a Mystery Monday book!

  4. April 7, 2011 7:13 am

    I like the idea of it and I’m glad you’ll give the writing another shot. I think I’ve just about overdosed on creepy mysteries, lately, but I’m making a list of the ones that sound interesting for when I’m not overly saturated with sleuthing!

  5. April 7, 2011 7:34 am

    The premise of this one sounds interesting, but it sounds as if the execution was just a little bit slippery. I am not a big fan of this genre, as you know, so I will probably pass on this book. I am sorry to hear that you felt let down though.

  6. April 7, 2011 7:59 am

    I’ve got a copy of this one packed away right now. The cover of this book is striking. I’ll keep your thoughts in mind, but I’m still looking forward to it. Thanks for sharing, Kathy!

  7. April 7, 2011 8:33 am

    I kind of like the idea of a photographer protagonist, so I might give it a try (with realistic expectations).

  8. April 7, 2011 8:48 am

    I’m really on a mystery jag lately so I might try this one!

  9. April 7, 2011 10:33 am

    An interesting (and kind of creepy) concept. I always give a little slack to first novels since there’s so much character development that needs to be done. I’ll go in to this with lower expectations but will definitely add this to my wish list.

  10. April 7, 2011 10:53 am

    I really like the idea of this book. And since I enjoy art and photography, I might like it.

  11. April 7, 2011 11:49 am

    Using a photographer as an amateur sleuth seems like a stretch but then I used to think using a cook was a stretch and look how well that has worked. I may give this one a try.

  12. April 7, 2011 12:50 pm

    I do not read many murder mysteries. This sounds pretty good.

  13. April 7, 2011 1:35 pm

    I really enjoy mysteries, but this one just isn’t grabbing my attention. There are just so many mystery series out there.

  14. April 7, 2011 1:39 pm

    Sorry this one wasn’t a great read for you but at least you want to continue on in the series. It does sound like an interesting premise for a story though.

  15. April 7, 2011 2:32 pm

    The premise sounds interesting…some overtones here of the classic Antonioni movie “Blowup,” perhaps. Sorry the execution didn’t live up to hopes; I may have to give it a try because of the photography background.

  16. April 7, 2011 2:40 pm

    I enjoy reading mysteries, sorry this one wasn’t what you expected.

  17. April 7, 2011 3:14 pm

    This sounds straight out of a CSI!!! I have to say it sounds good…

  18. April 7, 2011 3:59 pm

    Great honest review. Thanks for covering how easy it is to figure out the mystery.

  19. April 7, 2011 4:11 pm

    Sorry this one wasn’t as good as you had hoped it would be. Fingers crossed the 2nd in the series is better.

  20. April 7, 2011 4:18 pm

    Dunno, maybe I will just wait and see how the others turn out

  21. April 7, 2011 6:42 pm

    I enjoy a good mystery, but if I can’t get into the characters and I can guess the outcome, it doesn’t work for me. Hopefully, the next mystery will be better.

  22. April 7, 2011 7:19 pm

    I’m going to get a hold of this one. Thank you so much for the review.

  23. April 7, 2011 7:38 pm

    Hey like the new format of the comment box… good for my eyes that are getting hit by the wrath of AGE!

    I will keep in mind what you wrote for when I read the book. I was dismayed to hear the mystery being somewhat easy to guess… I always like to be a detective to figure things out but not too easily!

    Another honest and well written review.

  24. April 7, 2011 7:51 pm

    Expectations can be a dangerous thing sometimes.

  25. April 7, 2011 8:08 pm

    wow this book sounds amazing and like something i would really enjoy! thanks for bringing it to my attention.

  26. April 7, 2011 8:13 pm

    Kathy, I’ve had that same thing happen to me on several occasions. I really had high expectations of a book because I’d heard people talk about it or it won awards and then it didn’t live up to my expectations. Had I gone in without knowing those things maybe my opinion would have been different? I don’t know. The other time I’ve felt bad about my reactions to books are when they are decent books but I read them after a really spectacular book and then they seem blah. Had I read them at a different time, that reaction would likely have been different.

    Thanks for reviewing it. You’ve made this week absolutely fabulous. I feel very fortunate to have you participating. 🙂

  27. April 7, 2011 8:44 pm

    Interesting premise for a book. Too bad the emotions of the main character didn’t get through. I don’t think I would read this one. I’d like to be surprised when I find out who the real culprit is. Maybe the author’s next books will keep readers guessing.

  28. April 7, 2011 9:32 pm

    I liked the way you described them as formal and therefore hard for you to connect with..that is the way I’ve felt with some characters in the past too.

  29. April 7, 2011 10:42 pm

    I initially thought this is nonfiction, but then realized it is a thriller. Looks like the author’s writing makes it worth reading this!

  30. April 8, 2011 1:48 am

    As you know, I don’t get into this type of book but I got to say that the premise is quite unique. I enjoyed reading your review.

  31. April 8, 2011 1:51 pm

    Meh, I’ll pass. I don’t like figuring out mysteries before the end of the book. Sorry this didn’t live up to your expectations.

  32. stacybuckeye permalink
    April 9, 2011 12:01 am

    I’ve had this on my shelf for a while and just picked it up and read the first chapter a few days ago. It looks fun and relatively short…two things I need right now!

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