Book Review: The Braque Connection

Forged masterpieces. Hidden messages. A desperate swan song. When world-renowned nonverbal communication expert Doctor Genevieve Lenard wakes up in an unknown location, drugged and kidnapped, it pushes the limits of her autism coping skills. For the last year, Russian philanthropist and psychopath Tomasz Kubanov has been studying Genevieve just as she and her team have been studying him. Now forged paintings and mysterious murders are surfacing around her team, with evidence pointing to one of them as the killer. Genevieve knows Kubanov is behind these senseless acts of violence. What she doesn’t understand are the inconsistencies between his actions and the cryptic messages he sends. Something has triggered his unpredictable behaviour, something that might result in many more deaths, including those she cares for. Because this time, Kubanov has nothing to lose.

The wonderful tale continues.

Estelle Ryan revisits some of the past plot twists, and brings out new threads that she had hidden away.  Though most authors would have worn out their villain by now, Estelle has a vital, frightening, intriguing twist or two left.  Genevieve is faced with a man she knows wants to see her hurt, if not dead.  Her team have forged themselves into more than a disparate jumble of individuals, and she serves as the heart that keeps it together.  The plot has taken on a darker tone, and it seems that everything is up for grabs.

Fast paced, and intense, this book starts with a bang and does not stop.  Time and again, the events that occur feel more like gut punches, rather than just a new layer added to the story.  When everything starts to wind down, there is a distinct sense of, “it’s about time, give the poor woman a breather!”  However, Ms. Ryan has one or two tricks still up her sleeve.

The character development in this book is not as intense as the first two, though it still continues to balance the plot for what drives the story onward.  Instead, what appears to be the main focus of this installment (character wise) is the way that Genevieve copes with the trials thrown at her.  Up until now, we have been shown two methods, and this book presents a few more.  Some are suitable, others… not so much in polite company.  We also get to learn more about Genevieve’s past.  Some of the other characters also open up more, which adds a rich texture to the character depths we already know about.

Once again, I enjoyed the book enough to give it a full five out of five stars.  The biggest down side is that I am now one book closer to the most recently published.

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