Read advance reader review of Security by Gina Wohlsdorf

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by Gina Wohlsdorf

Security by Gina Wohlsdorf X
Security by Gina Wohlsdorf
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  • Published Jun 2016
    288 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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  • Susan
    The evil eye in the sky.
    As recent events in our courts and news have illustrated, what we originally perceived was there to protect us has become a tool to be used to embarrass and discredit us. Ms. Wohlsdorf takes it one step further. The newest luxury hotel about to open on the California coast is a threat not only to the disappearing landscape but to any of the competition. Purported to be the epitome of luxury and to have state of the art security measures owned by one of the coast's richest, albeit most paranoid entrepreneurs, Manderley (a nod to DuMaurier) is preparing for its grand opening. With nods to Hitchcock and a little Christie, one by one the key players in the staff are picked off one by one. Tense, tending towards the cinematic. Who are these people and why are they doing what they are doing? More importantly, who is relating this action to us?

    This is a first novel and the author shows great promise. I did feel the erotica was unnecessary for no other reason than I felt it distracted from the action. The murders are not described in extreme detail compared to other books I have read and for those that I am sure complained, as the accompanying blurb warns, "the terrible truth about Manderley is that someone is always watching"! And this is written over blood spatter. Forwarned is forearmed.

    I doubt I will ever trust hotel or the eye in the sky again.
  • Joy Z. (Santa teresa, NM)
    I really enjoyed reading this book. I loved the split column text, because I knew that I was reading two things happening at once and it made it clear that this was two perspectives. I really enjoyed the development of the characters, because people are complicated. Each character seemed to have something that was really likable and then something that was, not so likable (just like all of us). The only reason I did not give a 5 star is because there are some very very graphic violent scenes.
  • Norman G. (Washougal, WA)
    Excellent start, over-the-top finish
    I found the book engaging and satisfying for the first 170 pages then it turned cliched. I classify the story as a fine beach read to be enjoyed but not really thought about. My main problem came at the end where I was unsure if I was reading a comic parody or an over-the-top sex and gore festival.
    One additional thought, Tessa developed nicely but I though Brian lacked depth. The novel could actually be improved through the inclusion of an additional 50 pages.
  • Patricia H. (Norman, OK)
    Unusual Presentation
    I have never run across a book that was presented to the reader the way this book was set up. In important scenes the book showed what various characters were doing at the same time by writing the prose in separate columns across the page. It was unique in my experience and at first was a bit strange but as the book advanced I came to find it very helpful in moving the story along.

    A beautiful new hotel on a lovely unspoiled beach is about to open. The general manager and several key staff have remained late to perform last minute checks to be sure all is ready. The hook for this exclusive hotel is that it has the latest and greatest privacy and safety features for celebrities to unwind, businessmen to enjoy their mistress or any other secretive meet up you would like.

    But things go horribly wrong from the very start with a housekeeper discovering blood where none should be in room 717. One by one the staff meet the killers who plan to leave no one alive. But Tess, the GM, and her boyfriend Brian, who shows after an eleven year absence are determined to have a different ending once they are aware of what is happening. The story is told by an unseen and unknown character who works to save Tess and Brian from the slaughter.

    I enjoyed the book, the murder scenes are not particularly gruesome for those who might be squeamish. It is an unusual story written in an unusual way which does not distract from the story or the pleasure of reading the novel. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I did not give the book five stars only because I was a little confused at first with the presentation.
  • Darcy C.
    Gory, but a decent story.
    The printed format of the pages, of which simultaneous action was taking place, (the story being told via a column-format) was a clever and fun way to read.

    Protagonist, Tessa - it was difficult to suss out her personality and for me to like her. She came across as 2-dimensional character. I would have liked to be in her head more.

    The late intro of Brian was helpful to soften Tess up. His participation in the story was a bonus. He helped to complete the blanks and questions I had about Tess and what contributed to her being such an enigma now.

    The description of the secret elevator had me transfixed. This book has a fairly high “gore-factor” than other fiction books, but it didn’t detract from my overall impression. I noticed the details of the gore only because I don’t usually read horror or have much exposure to the gore. I could see potential readers being put-off due to the deeply descriptive gore.

    The overall high-tech design and opulence of the hotel setting have me looking forward to seeing the book made into a movie. If done correctly, the movie could be the perfect setting for a “date night”. The gore will be enjoyed by my date and I could use the scary parts to be safe in his arms. This is always an extra score for the book! I would rate the story as entertaining but could lose points (and readers) because of the blood and in-depth descriptions of things in the book that cause blood to spill.
  • Madeline (Florida)
    Almost There
    This book had a lot of potential that, in my opinion, it just didn't reach. The concept of watching the story unfold through the security cameras was intriguing. The "twist" learned three-quarters of the way through the book, was excellent - I would've loved for that reveal to happen sooner. The story took a turn into graphic/explicit and gross/gory territories that made me uncomfortable, but that I also just found unnecessary to the story itself.
  • Valerie C. (Chico, CA)
    Slasher not Thriller
    I have read half this book, and will not finish. This is more of a poorly written horror novel than a thriller. It is absolutely nothing like Girl on a Train or The Widow or Gone Girl. There is even a reference to " a turd plopping" in a toilet. So, if you like horror movies and books, this may be a good read for you. Otherwise, I recommend find your next great read elsewhere..
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