Series: Veronica Mars #2
Published by Vintage on January 20, 2015
Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
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In the second book in the New York Times bestselling mystery series, Veronica Mars is back with a case that will expose the hidden workings of one of Neptune’s most murderous locations.
The Neptune Grand has always been the seaside town’s ritziest hotel, despite the shady dealings and high-profile scandals that seem to follow its elite guests. When a woman claims that she was brutally assaulted in one of its rooms and left for dead by a staff member, the owners know that they have a potential powder keg on their hands. They turn to Veronica to disprove—or prove—the woman's story.
The case is a complicated mix of hard facts, mysterious occurrences, and uncooperative witnesses. The hotel refuses to turn over its reservation list and the victim won’t divulge who she was meeting that night. Add in the facts that the attack happened months ago, the victim’s memory is fuzzy, and there are holes in the hotel’s surveillance system, and Veronica has a convoluted mess on her hands. As she works to fill in the missing pieces, it becomes clear that someone is lying—but who? And why?
Where would Neptune be without Veronica Mars, the righteous blonde PI? A lot of women would be in trouble, that’s for sure as Veronica goes after a predator who has raped and abused a young woman at Neptune Grand.
Reminiscent of what Veronica has experienced in the past, we can understand why she would be emotionally invested in the case of Grace Manning, although there aren’t any dead bodies or murders reported as part of the case. Veronica navigates the waters of widespread political and police corruption in Mr. Kiss and Tell to take down someone who she believes is guilty.
“This is seriously threatening my hardboiled persona,” Veronica said, “because I have never wanted to squee so badly in my life.”
There’s a lot of roadblocks to the case in Mr. Kiss and Tell, that will even stump Veronica, Mac and Keith. But they’ll put together their smarts, acting, hacking and steely resolve in order to crack the case, and it was fantastic seeing it all unfold. Mixed between softer moments, where Veronica banters with her fellow colleagues and mushy times where her and Logan get a dog, Mr. Kiss and Tell is a worthy addition to the series.
I loved seeing more of Logan and Veronica’s relationship, as he was largely absent in the first book, and how they would overcome distance and the difficulties they would encounter. While Logan may be the only one that will crack her hard exterior, Veronica is sidetracked by the case that she’s working on, leaving little time to make the most of Logan before he gets summoned by the Navy. Things are never going to be perfect between LoVe, but what was important is that they both wanted to try. Logan will bridge the gap of what happened when Veronica left Neptune 9 years ago, bringing us up to speed for how he turned to the Navy.
In Neptune, the past was always grabbing at your ankles, trying to pull you back.
What I love about Veronica Mars, is the father daughter relationship that underpins the whole series. Keith is still ever protective about his blonde steely daughter, but here we finally see him relinquish some of his control with his fellow partner and investigator.
Although I enjoyed Mr Kiss and Tell, I could feel some of the spark disappearing as this one tries to mesh too much in. For Veronica, it’s all a juggling act between Keith, Logan, and the case, and we’ll even see more of the past characters return, especially with a large focus on Weevil. She goes off track with the case quite a lot as she tends to lose focus, and the solving of the crime happened a little too conveniently for my liking. There wasn’t really a heavy mystery surrounding the suspect, which made it all a bit too easy.
“How often do people say thank you to you?”
“‘Thank you’ ranks just below ‘You ruined my life’ and just above ‘When I get my hands on you’.” – Veronica
Although it’s lacking some of the witty banter by Veronica’s neurotic self, Mr. Kiss and Tell will please fans of the series especially those missing the warm and fuzzy times between Veronica and Logan. It continues the charm of the original series, following on from many character’s lives and what’s happened 10 years since the show. If you want to see Veronica fight crime and corruption, Mr. Kiss and Tell will be up your alley.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Thank you to Allen and Unwin for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.
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