THRILLER: Reckless – Susan Kiernan-Lewis

(Subtitled – A Mia Kazmaroff Mystery Book 1)

Reckless-51NWHpa3LiL._SX332_BO1,204,203,200_Reckless was provided to me by Kindle free of charge and is the first of a series of Mia Kazmaroff Mysteries, written by Susan  Kiernan-Lewis and published by San Marco Press. The books that follow on in the series are “Shameless”, “Breathless”, “Heartless” and “Loveless”.

Checking out Susan’s website, which can be found here: it becomes clear that she is a prolific writer, covering a number of genres. As a new novelist who has come to the craft quite late I was particularly interested to wander around the website of someone who does write as prolifically as she clearly does. As my books can loosely be classified in a genre of “Romance” or “Fantasy Romance”, I was keen to check myself against a clear professional.

Another of Susan’s series is titled the Maggie Newbury Mysteries, described as “cozy mysteries”. She has also written a number of books that fit the genre of “Romantic Time Travel”, as well as a series based on the “Irish End Games” in a Dystopian World – all in all plenty to choose from. I would urge readers to visit her website and check out the many titles on offer. I was particularly looking forward to reading this book as it was a very specific genre – “detective mystery” and I was interested to see if that meant it would be formulaic.

First of all I should mention that I read the entire book in virtually one sitting, covering a Sunday morning and afternoon. For me this is an invariably good sign that I was captivated by the story and the characters. Although this is a detective mystery story, it has that mild touch of the paranormal attached to it, which lifts it out of the cliched world of the pretty young girl and crusty detective who are forced to work together to solve a crime – and of course, ultimately fall in love. The paranormal aspect to the story gave it the right balance for my particular taste.

The basic plot revolves around Mia Kazmaroff, whose brother, a Police Detective, is found dead in his condominium. Initial inquiries and medical findings suggest there is nothing suspicious about his death and it is consigned as a death due to natural causes. Mia however is convinced that her brother was murdered and links up with her brother’s former partner to attempt to solve the mystery. The partner Jack Burton had never gotten on with Mia’s brother and despite them having the best success record in the Division, Jack had long been seeking for a reassignment to get away from him.

Once the pair establish that indeed Mia’s brother Dave was murdered and the Department reopen the inquiry into his murder, it is Jack Burton himself who becomes the prime suspect. Mia and Jack set about to discover the true murderer, each in their own way. Mia has inherited a “gift” from her Mother that allows her to sense events just by touching something that relates to the person or event. She is always keen to use her “gift” to assist them to solve the murder, whereas a skeptical Jack would rather use the tried and true police methods.

I found the story incredibly easy to read and the characters readily identifiable. One sure sign that the writer has succeeded in captivating the reader is how much the reader identifies with the actions of the characters. I certainly found myself regularly telling Mia (in my head) to stop being so headstrong and rushing in where angels fear to tread and to wait for Jack. Susan has been extremely successful in creating characters that the reader wants to support or to take to their hearts.

Much of the tension, including the sexual tension in the book revolves around the interaction between Mia and Jack. It is fairly clear that it isn’t a “will they?” or “won’t they?” scenario. Early on it becomes a “when will they?” situation. The end result of their collaboration is for future readers to discover, however it is reasonable to say that the remaining books in the series focus on the ongoing “Detective Agency” of Kazmaroff and Burton.

I found “Reckless” an extremely easy and enjoyable read. I would strongly recommend it to anyone who is a fan of romance, and particularly romantic detective stories. A sure sign the book is a winner in my estimation is that I already want to read the rest of the Mia Kazmaroff Mysteries.

This is an excellent start to the series and I am sure the remainder will live up to the standard set by this one. On my scale; “Reckless” is an easy “Five Starrer”. A great read that captures you and carries you along with it. Reckless can be purchased here, although at last check it was still available for free on Kindle:

For other blog posts by Grant Leishman visit:

Grant Leishman
Grant Leishman is an expatriate New Zealander living in Manila, The Philippines, with his wife and two step-daughters. At age 55, after careers in Finance and Journalism, he has finally discovered his true passion in life – writing and he is now “living the dream”, writing full-time.

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