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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Book Review, Shiny Water by Anna Salter

Forensic psychologist Michael Stone is convinced that the children of a prominent surgeon are being sexually molested by him. The doctor’s wife seems emotionally unstable but Stone doesn’t see her as a threat. When Stone is called to testify at the high-profile custody battle between the wife and doctor, she tells the truth, however justice is not served and slick lawyer working for the doctor manages to twist and dodge the truth.  The children end up the custody of their father.
Less than twenty four hours later they are found dead in the home of the mother and all signs point to her as the murderer. Stone is devastated by the news and her reputation is in tatters. Could she have been that deceived by the severity of the mother’s instability?  Did the father kill the kids? And why do the patients she is seeing seem to be digressing instead of making progress?

Anna Salter’s heroine of this novel has a tragic past of her own and she threads the grief Stone experienced from the loss of her own child with the deaths of the two children.

Like John Grisham, who has a background in law, Salter is an expert in her field. She holds a doctorate in clinical psychology. It is this expertise that no average writer could even begin to incorporate into a story line and which lends credibility to the work.  It’s also both fascinating and shocking to learn just how troubled some of the clients are that she sees and the high molestation rate is troubling. It’s also an eye opener, much like the Grisham novels, about the corruption of the judicial system.

She does a good job building the suspense in this mystery. I would love to read more of her work. I give her a 4 ½ our of 5 star rating on this one.

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