Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Listen to Me and The Spy Coast by Tess Gerritsen

One of my goals for this new year is to revive this blog and post frequently. I’ve got a lot of catching up to do with a backlog of overdue reviews. So welcome to a new recurring feature “Wayback Wednesday: Catching up on the Overdue for Review Pile.”

Boston homicide detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles are newly plagued by what seems like a completely senseless murder. Sofia Suarez, a widow and nurse who was universally liked by all her neighbors, lies bludgeoned to death in her own home. But anything can happen behind closed doors, and Sofia seemed to have plenty of secrets in her last days, making covert phone calls to old contacts and traceless burner phones. When Jane finally makes a connection between Sofia and the victim of a hit-and-run months earlier, the case only grows more blurry. What exactly was Sofia involved in? One thing is clear: The killer will do anything it takes to keep their secret safe.

Meanwhile, Angela Rizzoli hasn’t had a decent night’s sleep in all the years since her daughter became a homicide detective. Maybe the apple didn’t fall too far from the tree. Nothing in her neighborhood gets by Angela—not the gossip about a runaway teenager down the block and definitely not the strange neighbors who have just moved in across the street. Angela’s sure there’s no such thing as coincidence in her sleepy suburb. If only Jane would listen; instead she writes off Angela’s concerns as the result of an overactive imagination. But Angela’s convinced there’s a real wolf in her vicinity, and her cries might now fall on deaf ears.

With so much happening on the Sofia case, Jane and Maura already struggle to see the forest for the trees, but will they lose sight of something sinister happening much closer to home?


This was another fantastic entry in the Rizzoli & Isles series.  I loved that this one featured more of Angela Rizzoli (Jane’s mother) than previous installments.  This was a great balance of crime thriller and the interpersonal relationships of Jane, her mother, and her best friend Maura.  However this book could’ve used a dash more of Maura.  She is my fictional bestie, after all and one of my favorite fictional characters.  I devoured this book in one day, it was just that good!! 

Special thanks to Netgalley and Ballantine Books for the digital ARC.

Listen to Me is available at book retailers everywhere or check out Tess Gerritsen’s website for more information.

4 out of 5 Stars

If you already love Tess Gerritsen and are looking for something different and brand new, I recommend her latest thriller, The Spy Coast, book one in the new Martini Coast series.

Former spy Maggie Bird came to the seaside village of Purity,  Maine, eager to put the past behind her after a mission went tragically  wrong. These days, she’s living quietly on her chicken farm, still wary  of blowback from the events that forced her early retirement.

But  when a body turns up in Maggie’s driveway, she knows it’s a message  from former foes who haven’t forgotten her. Maggie turns to her local  circle of old friends―all retirees from the CIA―to help uncover the  truth about who is trying to kill her, and why. This “Martini Club” of  former spies may be retired, but they still have a few useful skills  that they’re eager to use again, if only to spice up their rather sedate  new lives.

Complicating their efforts is Purity’s  acting police chief, Jo Thibodeau. More accustomed to dealing with rowdy  tourists than homicide, Jo is puzzled by Maggie’s reluctance to share  information―and by her odd circle of friends, who seem to be a step  ahead of her at every turn.

As Jo’s investigation  collides with the Martini Club’s maneuvers, Maggie’s hunt for answers  will force her to revisit a clandestine career that spanned the globe,  from Bangkok to Istanbul, from London to Malta. The ghosts of her past  have returned, but with the help of her friends―and the reluctant Jo  Thibodeau―Maggie might just be able to save the life she’s built.

I was enthralled by this seemingly mundane small town that is quietly filled with retired CIA operatives.  I loved that older characters were the driving force of the action.  You definitely don’t want to mess with Maggie Bird and her former associates.  I also loved Maggie’s teenage neighbor, she’s super quirky and I hope we see more of her as well in future installments.  The central mystery of the story also kept me guessing which was an avid reader/sleuth-er of mysteries, is hard to do.  

I received a digital copy of The Spy Coast through Amazon “First Reads” program but you can get your copy at book retailers everywhere or check Tess Gerritsen’s website for more information.

4.5 out of 5 Stars

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