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Shallow End

de Brenda Chapman

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a-- Officers Stonechild and Gundersund head up the investigation and Jane Thompson quickly becomes the prime suspect. But knowing guilt and proving it are two entirely different things. Wading through deeply buried secrets to the truth will take Stonechild and the team on a twisted journey into the heart of evil. The question is: who will come out the other side?… (mais)
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Exibindo 3 de 3
4.5 stars.

Shallow End by Brenda Chapman is a riveting mystery that has plenty of unexpected twists and turns. This fourth installment in the Stonechild and Rouleau series can easily be read as a standalone but I highly recommend the other books in the series.

After teenager Devon Eton is murdered, Staff Sergeant Jacques Rouleau assigns Detectives Kala Stonechild and Paul Gundersund to the case. Devon's parents, Hilary and Mitchell are convinced Jane Thompson, the teacher who was convicted of sexually abusing their son four years earlier, is responsible for his death. Recently released from prison, Jane is attempting to rebuild her life and reconnect with her two children. Stonechild and Gundersund's investigation turns up no evidence against Jane and in fact, they are having a difficult time uncovering any leads in the case. Does Devon's best friend Charlie Hanson know more than he is telling? What possible motive would Jane have for killing Devon? Stonechild and Gundersund hope the answers to these very intriguing questions will help them unmask Devon's killer.

Rouleau, Stonechild and Gundersund are seasoned detectives but their investigation quickly hits a brick wall. Stonechild is very intuitive and she relies are her instincts just as much as she does the evidence. Not wanting to reveal her theories until she has more information, Stonechild is a bit of a loner who plays her cards very close to her vest for much of the investigation. Gundersund cannot help but be a little concerned that Stonechild is reverting to old habits, but he knows she will confide in him once she the evidence to back to up her hunches.

Kala and Paul are not as certain as the Etons that Jane is responsible for their son's death. They turn up a few inconsistencies during their interviews with Devon's teachers and classmates. By all accounts, he is an incredibly smart young man who is well-liked by his peers but his coach's assessment of his player is not quite as positive as everyone else's. They are also quite certain that Charlie knows much more than he is telling but he is rather uncooperative during their interviews with him.

In addition to the ongoing investigation, the detectives assigned to the case are struggling with personal issues as well. Kala grows increasingly worried about the situation with her niece Dawn, who is not settling in with her foster family. Paul despairs of ever getting free of his estranged wife, Fiona, who refuses to believe their marriage is finally over. Rouleau is still grieving his ex-wife's death and he continues to be concerned about his father. Fellow detective Woodhouse continues to be a thorn in everyone's side due to his off color jokes and sly behavior.

Shallow End is an incredibly well-written police procedural with a clever storyline and brilliant plot twists. Brenda Chapman keeps the murderer's identity and motive for the crime tightly under wraps right up until the novel's explosive conclusion. An absolutely outstanding addition to the Stonechild and Rouleau series that old and new fans do not want to miss. ( )
  kbranfield | Feb 3, 2020 |
This was my second book in this series and I am really liking it. This one dealt with a teacher, Jane, who just got out of jail for having had sexual relations with her 12 year old student, Devon Eton. She was sentenced to three years, but only served two as she pled guilty and they minimized her sentence. Of course, she was married and lost her husband and two children during this time, as well.

Either the day of or the day after, Jane, gets out of jail, the Devon Eton is found dead near the water, near his home. Of course, Jane is the main suspect. The boy's parents are rich and obnoxious and immediately want her put back in jail. They know Jane has done it and what are the police waiting for? When I say obnoxious, I mean disgustingly so. You know the type.

So just when Jane was going to get to see her kids, her ex-husband zips them off and says no way. He is, naturally, being a real pain about all of this. Of course, he already has a live-in girlfriend whom I think he had right about the time Jane went to jail. And she's a real treat, not.

Meanwhile, Stonechild, the police officer is having her own personal problems. One of her fellow officers, Wickless (change W to D) still can't stand the fact that a woman is better than him, so he is out to get her. Also her niece in foster care (put there thanks to Wickless) is having issues).

The chief is dealing with his wife's recent death due to cancer and Stonechild's partner is dealing with a wife he wants to divorce and she thinks their marriage can be saved. Actually she thinks that her husband will go running to Stonechild if she gives him up. Now she has cheated on her husband several times and will do so again. However, there is no one in the wings right now, but she can't stand the fact he will run to Stonechild. Oh yes, there is drama. And that's just the human emotional part of this book.

Then, we have the solving of the murder part of this case. And there are also a few surprises. And a HUGE jaw dropping ending. I myself quite like all of this going on and really like seeing the bad guys tripping over themselves, like the users getting hung out to dry. There was a lot of fist pumping going on in my house due to the outcomes. Yes, quite a few.

HUGE thanks to Dundurn for approving my request and to Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest review. There was a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for this reader. ( )
  debkrenzer | Mar 3, 2017 |
Jane Thompson used to have it all….beauty, a handsome husband, 2 great kids & a rewarding teaching career. Now she lives alone in a tiny damp flat, sneaking out the back to dodge reporters on her way to work at the Salvation Army.

Her new “career” is courtesy of an early release program. Four years ago, Jane was charged with the sexual assault of one of her students. In short order, she was convicted, imprisoned & divorced. All she lives for now is a chance to see the kids but her ex is not exactly the forgiving type.

Over at the Kingston Police Department, the detectives are getting restless. Local criminals seem to have taken the summer off & things at the station are slow. Then the call comes in. The body of a teenage boy was found by the lake. Jacques Rouleau assigns the case to detectives Kala Stonechild & Paul Gunderson and they quickly determine 2 things. It’s definitely a homicide & the victim is Devon Eton, Jane’s former student & accuser.

I’ll leave it there for the investigation aspect of the story. There are plenty of twists (and a few bombshells) ahead & the less you know going in, the more you’ll enjoy each WTH moment. Suffice to say I was in danger of needing a neck brace after my double take in the final chapter.

What has always distinguished this series for me is the equal time devoted to the development of interesting & original characters. Kala is First Nations & it’s been a rocky road to where she is now. Due to her childhood she is a quiet, self contained woman who prefers the company of her dog Taiku to most people. A few years ago she met Jacques Rouleau (book #1) & he’s been her boss ever since.

Jacques is a kind, patient man moving toward the end of his career. Usually he keeps a sharp eye on his detectives but in this outing, his personal life has him distracted. On top of that, he has to figure out what to do about one of his detectives who is a slime ball while placating a superior who’s never met a camera he didn’t like.

Paul Gunderson is a big brawny cop with more than a professional interest in Kala. There’s just one eensy little problem….his estranged-wife-from-hell Fiona who also happens to be the coroner. And as much as I sympathize with him for the hoops she’s put him through, there are times I’d like to cuff some sense into him. He’s a man in desperate need of a V-8 moment.

The case is a gripping one with Jane as the obvious suspect. And it’s not helped by the cops having to deal with a bunch of teenagers who lie like they breathe. The author does a good job of examining the ripple effects when someone is convicted of such a hot button crime. In some ways the perpetrator gets to escape the fallout when they’re put away. But their family remains on the outside where they’re subjected to the whispers & sideway glances of friends & neighbours. Purely by association, they too serve a sentence & theirs may be life.

It’s a twisty & thought provoking read that could stand alone but I really recommend starting with “Cold Mourning”. There’s a huge back story behind the characters, particularly between Kala & Jacques & each book is all the richer as the relationships develop. Can’t wait for book #5. ( )
  RowingRabbit | Dec 2, 2016 |
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a-- Officers Stonechild and Gundersund head up the investigation and Jane Thompson quickly becomes the prime suspect. But knowing guilt and proving it are two entirely different things. Wading through deeply buried secrets to the truth will take Stonechild and the team on a twisted journey into the heart of evil. The question is: who will come out the other side?

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