An out of practice reader discussing the books I get around to reading.
So, as a reminder, I work for the author. Nice lady, not great with social media.
Cold Blood, Hot Sea follows Mara Tusconi as she tries to find out the truth behind the "accident" that killed her colleague, get the grant funding she needs, AND conquer her fear of public speaking. Yeah, there's a lot going on. Though, much to Charlene's credit, the book didn't feel like there was too much going on, at least not to me. Well, maybe at one or two points, but only one or two.
Overall I quite liked the book. The story was compelling and there were many points where I didn't want to put the book down. Mara was a likable character and for the most part enjoyed being in her head, though I did find her jealousy of Harvey a little annoying. It bugs me when a character constantly focuses on how much "better" another character is in comparison. But that's all very minor. Mara, as well as the other characters, felt like people I could meet in real life. In fact, she sounded just like some of the professors at my school. So the cast are fun to follow.
Another thing I really enjoyed the book is the way D'Avanzo handles the subject of climate change, a really hot button topic. The book doesn't make anyone feel bad about being skeptical or unsure about the discussion. In fact, the only people it out right attacks are the flat out deniers, the corrupt kind that endanger other people's lives. One of the main characters himself is a skeptic, and he's a very human and enjoyable character. Many of the explanations given in the book about climate change science also help clarify a lot about the discussion and taught me a lot of things. I was really impressed with the way it was handled, since I've seen that discussion written in a much preachier way *cough cough, Maximum Ride, cough*.
The one thing I felt the book struggled with was pacing. There were some sections that felt like they lasted much longer than they should have and areas where I would have liked more information. Additionally, there were some areas where she could have made things a lot more intense than she did, such as when Mara's kayak rolled. I was just kind of like, you could have made this so intense but you kind of breezed right past it. But it's only the first book in the series, so I'm sure the next one will improve on these areas.
Final rating: 3 out of 5 stars. I liked it overall and would read it again. Gonna try and take shorter showers too.
Final thought: Should be done with Sunshine Girl this week. That'll be fun to review.