Live Socially, Die Socially

Original publish date: 5 June 2014

Socialite found murdered in her home. Intrigue surrounding a love affair. TV news producer investigates the story more closely than normal to find the killer as the murder victim is her best friend.

The story took many twists and turns through possible murderers as Clyde investigates Olivia’s brutal murder in Tatiana Boncompagni’s Social Death. Having watched (more than) my fair share of crime shows, I’m pretty good at guessing whodunit. In this story, I had my vague inkling of the true murderer, but I wasn’t quite sure because I didn’t see the motive for that particular person, which hints at good suspense writing; however, the largest twist for Clyde’s life, I guessed immediately.

To get into some of the finer details, Clyde described herself on the first page of the chapter and all I have to say is NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOPE. “I have big breasts.” While this may in fact be true, a character launching into their physical attributes like this is unlikely unless it’s the only thing she identifies herself which and it’s NOT. If it was a more fully developed description that highlighted other physical attributes in a similar fashion, then it wouldn’t have seemed as strange, but this was a description that was out of place.

Something that always irks me is when authors are too explanatory–and when I write creatively, I’m at fault for it, too, which is probably why it bugs me so much. With Clyde being a TV journalist, there is some industry specific jargon. But explaining it parenthetically with just a definition isn’t the best way to clarify for the reader. Please give the reader some credit that they might be aware of what’s explained; after all, they do watch TV, and maybe even the news, so on some level, they know what you’re explaining, even if only vaguely.

For the structure of the story, I quite liked that it was divided into days, even if there were many instances of duplicate “Monday,” “Tuesday,” or “Thursday” cover pages. The sections helped provide pacing and highlight the trauma timeline of the murder.

Overall, I’d give this a 3 out of 5 stars. 

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