Monday, January 16, 2012

Book Review ~ Helpless

by Daniel Palmer
published by Kensington Publishing
release date February 1, 2012
*received from author for review

Summary: Nine years after he left Shilo, New Hampshire, former Navy Seal Tom Hawkins has returned to raise his teenage daughter, Jill, following the murder of his ex-wife, Kelly. Despite Tom’s efforts to stay close to Jill by coaching her high school soccer team, Kelly’s bitterness fractured their relationship. But life in Shilo is gradually shaping up into something approaching normal. Normal doesn’t last long. Shilo’s police sergeant makes it clear that Tom is his chief suspect in Kelly’s death. Then an anonymous blog post alleges that Coach Hawkins is sleeping with one of his players. Internet rumors escalate, and incriminating evidence surfaces on Tom’s own computer and cell phone. To prove his innocence, Tom must unravel a tangle of lies about his past. For deep amid the secrets he’s been keeping—from a troubled tour of duty to the reason for his ex-wife’s death—is the truth that someone will gladly kill to protect

My Thoughts: I found myself interested in this story right from the start. There is something eerie and compelling about reading a story that can believably take place.
The father/daughter relationship was well done based on a bad divorce with one parent trying to pit child against the other parent. Having Tom struggle to build this relationship of trust with Jill while also trying to prove his innocence really helped this aspect.
The story itself was interesting and kept me reading until the end. With the prevalence of sexting among this age group you can see many things from this book already taking place in our society. Then add in the cop with a grudge who is so blinded by past grudges that he wants to blame Tom for everything that is happening in his town, to so called friends who have a unique way of dealing with things you don't know who the real bad guys are.
The only thing that didn't work for me was the attempt at romance. It kind of felt like it was added to appeal to a certain audience and I didn't need it to enjoy the story. Both characters were strong enough to carry their roles without adding more to it.

Overall I enjoyed the small town politics of Helpless over the corporate intrigue of Delirium.

Rating: 4 

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