Dead Ringer

Dead Ringer
By Kate Kessler

ISBN 978-0316439053
Publication Date: October 2018


Review by Sharon Hopkins

Dead Ringer by Kate Kessler (Redhook, October 23, 2018) is a definite page-turning thriller with a twist.

One day when a teenage Rachel Ward and her identical twin Hannah switch places, Hannah is abducted and never heard from again.  Rachel’s guilt and determination propel her into law enforcement and eventually into the FBI eighteen years later. There she becomes part of the team assigned to solve the Gemini murders, involving a brutal kidnapper who abducts one identical twin and leaves the other. Rachel believes the Gemini murderer is the same person who took her sister, and who taunts her every year on the anniversary, by sending her pictures. Rachel believes her twin is alive and is still being held, prisoner.

Rachel does not start out as a character you immediately like, but as the story moves forward, Rachel earns your respect and admiration.

The book is dark and has some graphic scenes, but those scenes definitely aren’t gratuitous. Rachel and her partner, “Trick,” who is also her lover, defy the odds and corner the kidnapper. That’s when things take a really strange turn and keep turning right to the surprising end.

The story is well written, and the plot has a lot of twists, even though the perp is identified early on. It’s the kind of story you keep thinking about long after you reach the end.

I’d love to see a follow-up book!

Sharon Woods Hopkins’ mystery series featuring mortgage banker Rhetta McCarter and her ’79 Camaro hits close to home. Sharon is a former branch manager for a mortgage office of a Missouri bank. She also owns the original Cami, a restored ’79 Camaro like Rhetta’s. Sharon’s hobbies include painting, fishing, photography, flower gardening, and restoring muscle cars with her son, Jeff. She is a member of the Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Guppies, Thriller Writers of America, the Southeast Missouri Writers’ Guild, Heartland Writers, and the Missouri Writers’ Guild.