Thursday, March 1, 2012

Blood Orchids by Toby Neal
My rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

Book Blurb:
Hawaii is palm trees, black sand and blue water—but for policewoman Lei Texeira, there’s a dark side to paradise.

Lei has overcome a scarred past to make a life for herself as a cop in the sleepy Big Island town of Hilo. On a routine patrol she finds two murdered teenagers—one of whom she’d recently busted. With its echoes of her own past, the murdered girl’s harsh life and tragic death affect Lei deeply. She becomes obsessed—even as the killer is drawn to Lei's intensity, feeding off her vulnerabilities and toying with her sanity.
Despite her obsession with the case and fear that she's being stalked, Lei finds herself falling in love for the first time. Steaming volcanoes, black sand beaches and shrouded fern forests are the backdrop to Lei's quest for answers—and the stalker is closer than she can imagine, as threads of the past tangle in her future. Lei is determined to find the killer—but he knows where to find her first.

My review:
Blood Orchids is the debut novel by Toby Neal. This is a really solid mystery/thriller. It is really well written and I think I was even more suspicious of all the characters in the novel than Leilani was! Toby Neal knows how to feed you just enough information to keep you suspicious of everyone yet keep you hopeful too. I'd say she's every bit as good as one of my all-time favorite mystery writers - the famous Mr. James Patterson! I kept waiting for everyone around Lei to turn out to be the killer/stalker. Even after the satisfying conclusion I still think maybe there was something sinister about the one guy who wasn't involved in any of the crimes. Toby Neal is definitely an author to watch!

About Toby Neal:
Toby Neal was raised on Kauai in Hawaii. She wrote and illustrated her first story at age 5 and has been published in magazines and won several writing contests. After initially majoring in Journalism, she eventually settled on mental health as a career and loves her work, saying, “I’m endlessly fascinated with people’s stories.”

She enjoys many outdoor sports including bodyboarding, scuba diving, beach walking, gardening and hiking. She lives in Hawaii with her family and dogs.
Toby credits her counseling background in adding depth to her characters–from the villains to Lei Texeira, the courageous and vulnerable heroine in the Lei Crime Series.

Where can you buy Blood Orchids?
Barnes & Noble
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  1. Not often one is compared with Patterson. Nice review.

  2. I don't often compare authors to Patterson - he is a GOD among writers! Thanks for the compliment. :)