** I received a free copy of Death Of A Fixer Upper in return for my honest review as a part of House Party's Chatterbox program. Al opinions are my own. **
I have to say that the book cover really caught my eye. I think it really adds to the mystery and sort of reminds me of fairy tale books I had as a kid. (Which are also interesting because the covers sometimes seem to reflect a more happy and jolly story, rather than a mystery or suspense story.) That's the case with this book.
I agree this book is very fast paced and held my attention well! I did have a slight issue with sometimes having to reread a few sentences back just to remind myself of which characters were who and where. (There are a lot of characters!) I do feel that a few less would have helped a little bit. (Maybe there is something I'm missing, but, a couple of books in a series would be great and maybe introduce a few characters at a time.) I do feel that this would be a great series!
I don't know what I think about the main character, Sam. I think she was portrayed well, I am just not digging Sam's style but, that's my opinion and certainly shouldn't take from the book. Personally, I found parts of Sam's hectic, strange life, very familiar, and I know a couple of people who are similar to Sam. She is an interesting character, just not fascinating. I also like how the author uses adjectives and describes scenes. I think she did a wonderful job there! In some places, it starts to get irritating because it seems to be to many descriptions. (For instance, the icky smell in the bathroom in the beginning.) But, one of my favorite authors, Clive Barker, sometimes takes pages and pages, just to describe one thing. I find a lot of his books to be very hard to read because of how he dwells on abstract things for so long. This author isn't nearly as overly detailed as him! (That's a compliment by the way!) She does a fine job painting the pictures in your mind, of every single scene and character, so, that's a plus also!
The story itself is original and holds your interest. However, it's a very fast read and one of those books that you read on a sunny Saturday afternoon outside. It doesn't take up all of your attention and if you have to put it back down, (because of kids chatting your ears off!), it will just take a second to get back where you were. I enjoy these kinds of books even though I really love books that are a little more in depth. I think of the difference as a television sitcom as compared to a documentary and this book of a sitcom.
I think the story and the author's writing style are fabulous and I love the level of expertise the author has with real estate. Having experience or legitimate research in a career or in the character is one of the ways a book gets a lot of good review. Sarah Hobart does really well with forming a good story, delivering some very unexpected twists, and helping you to see everything play out in your mind. These are the reasons I am giving this book 4 stars