In The Heat Of The Moment by Viveca Sten

In The Heat Of The Moment by Viveca Sten
Publisher: Amazon Crossing
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Fern

What’s a lie among friends? It’s murder—in this riveting thriller by Viveca Sten, bestselling author of Tonight You’re Dead…

It’s Midsummer’s Eve, the celebration of the longest day of the year, and on Sandhamn it’s the longest party of the year. But the fun comes to a dead halt when a young reveler is murdered, a teenage girl is found drugged and dazed on the beach, and other young women vanish. So far, what links the victims is a mystery. For Nora Linde and her new boyfriend, Jonas Sköld, the crimes are personal: one of the missing girls is Wilma, Jonas’s daughter. And her disappearance could test Nora and Jonas’s relationship in ways they never expected.

Thrust into the investigation, they soon discover that it’s more than a case of bad blood between friends. But the truth, which has receded into a haze of carousing, drugs, and liquor, is getting harder to see. If Nora and Jonas are going to find out what happened to Wilma, they’d better do it fast—before the ebbing tides sweep away all the terrible secrets of that night on Sandhamn Island.

Midsummer’s Eve on Sandhamn and the revelry is at it’s very peak. Tourists have flocked to the small island and the harbours are filled with boats and wall to wall parties – both adults and children alike. The small police force are doing their best, but the swell of people have them overwhelmed. Then early the following morning a teenage boy is found dead, his body half-heartedly hidden under a shrub. His girlfriend was found a few hours earlier, drugged and barely conscious. Another teenage girl has gone missing. Can they piece together what happened during the longest night of the year?

This is the fifth book in the Sandhamn mystery series, and I feel the author is really hitting their stride. I felt the murder plot was very skillfully woven in and around the personal lives of both Nora and Thomas, their friendship remaining strong but each happily going about their daily lives. Thomas and his wife have welcomed their newborn daughter, and Nora is growing more comfortable with Jonas, her boyfriend as they blend their family with Jonas’ teenage daughter and Nora’s two nearly teenage boys.

I definitely feel readers can pick this book up by itself and thoroughly enjoy it. The mystery plot is very well defined and settled within this story. The pace of the plot might be a little slow for some readers more used to a fast or action orientated plot. While I personally found it light and fun – there is a fair balance of focus both on Thomas’ personal life, Nora’s family life and the murder plot. This makes the plot feel a little less action orientated and more mystery – not thriller or suspense.

I strongly feel this would be an excellent beach read or lazy weekend read – with a glass of wine or a tall cold drink. With interesting characters, a well plotted murder mystery and a lovely beachy atmosphere this was a good story and an author I plan to enjoy many more books from.

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