Relative Evil is a book that has it all---a compelling story, a can't-put-down plot, with just enough romance to make you sigh.
Claire Abney is a novelist, yet her writing career doesn't support her so she has to have a day job. I loved how real Claire's writing life was. It made me laugh out loud in some places! Claire has a loving family, that is, until her father introduces his children to his new wife---a woman that is much too young for her father and someone Claire doesn't like from the start. That feeling gets stronger when her father begins to have strange accidents and his new wife seems to love the attention she gets when she's taking care of her suddenly ailing husband.
Claire begins to research Munchausen syndrome which gives her an idea for a book. She doesn't want her family to know what she suspects, however, so she uses a male pen name and a front man to go to all the book signings. Everything would have been fine, no one ever the wiser, until the book's success brings attention to Claire and the handsome front man---her editor, Max. I loved Max and how real he seemed. He had ghosts from his past he was trying to overcome, and yet he was still sensitive to Claire, her career, and the bind she's in with her family. He also escapes some really dangerous situations and was the type of hero every girl wants to fall in love with.
Riding the wave of success, Claire's life takes a sharp turn when her father unexpectedly dies and Claire suspects her stepmother of killing him. She starts her own investigation, finally accepting some help from Max, but soon finds herself in danger of being killed herself. The twists and turns of the plot were so intriguing and Ms. Erfert does a great job of keeping the tension high.
I stayed up very late to finish the book and I was not disappointed. Loved the ending, loved the book, and I will be anxiously awaiting Ms. Erfert's next novel!
Here's the back copy:
Claire screens her family from the prying eyes of success with a masculine pen name and her handsome editor, her shill for photo ops and book signings. But her father’s unexpected death, and bungled attempts on her own life, force her to admit the strategy may have backfired. Now, with the help of her brother and Max, her dreamy frontman, she must separate truth from fiction. Before life imitating art becomes deadly.
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