Award Winning Women's Crime Fiction Reviewed By BookViral

"The perfect escape for a lazy weekend ..."

Women's Crime Fiction

Recommend  for the coveted BookViral Crimson Quill. To make your recommendation simply click on the award badge below..…. 

  • Publisher: ‎ Black Rose Writing (January 25, 2024)
  • Publication date: ‎ January 25, 2024
  • Language: ‎ English
  • Print length: ‎ 360 pages
  • Genre: Women’s Crime Fiction


The BookViral Review:

A hauntingly riveting read that quickly cranks up a full head of steam, What Happens In Montana delivers a compelling sense of fun and a sure-footed plot with Kim McCollum careful not to sacrifice pace for superfluous detail.

All the best books in the supernatural genre are character-driven. You can have an original plot, but if the reader doesn’t care for the characters then chances are they won’t get to the end of the book. Most importantly characters have to be interesting but not clichéd and this is something McCollum certainly gets right.

Avoiding the trap of a dull, predictive plot McCollum has a keen ear for dialogue which brings an exciting level of immediacy and much in the way of levity to her narrative which is well-conceived and finely tuned to the story she’s telling.

She certainly knows how to spin a captivating tale and whilst it isn’t the kind of drama that demands risky storytelling it never lunges for cheap drama. Simone’s not your typical beleaguered spirit unable to pass over due to the trauma of her death and in telling her story McCollum creates a powerful emotional arc which straddles past and present.

Told in the main from the alternating perspectives of Simone and resident feisty octogenarian chef Maud the intrigue quickly builds with the arrival of Brooke, Krista, Quinn and Tracy. This sets the scene for a girls’ getaway that will end in murder but there’s plenty of warmth and compassion, even as McCollum’s narrative tone veers from playful to menacing and somewhere altogether darker.

As the plot thickens and the suspense continues to mount McCollum keeps the story arc relatively small-scale, which not only allows her to sympathetically render the tragedy of Simone’s short life but explore the meaning of family and friendship through vividly complete fictional personas that she makes us care about. That is with the exception of Max whose demise is unlikely to have anyone shedding a tear as McCollum’s plot and confident tonal control throws one terrific curve ball after another.

The type of novel you read and feel like you’ve discovered something rather special What Happens In Montana is the perfect escape for a lazy weekend and an unreservedly recommended Golden Quill read!

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