Review of ‘Moonlight Avenue’ by Gerri Hill,
Audiobook narrated by Cassandra York
Finley Knight is an ex-cop turned into a private investigator living a solitary life in Corpus Christi, Texas. She prefers working solo but when former security guard Rylee Moore offers her services as a receptionist/assistant, Finley cannot resist her charms. When an apparently routine cheating-wife case changes into a murder investigation, Police Detective Dee Woodward gets involved. Dee prefers to do things by the book while Finley was never a stickler for the rules, but as events escalate and get extremely dangerous, the three women will need to work together and leave their differences – and their feelings – aside to defeat an extremely violent gang.
This is a very entertaining, fast-paced, crime mystery book by Gerri Hill with a romance at the side but with a lot of prominence in the story. The mystery plot is quite complex with many layers to unveil and a good number of suspects. Despite this, Ms. Hill manages to pull off a credible and absorbing story that keeps the reader guessing until the end. The novel is written from the point of view of Finley, Rylee, and Dee who are multilayered characters with distinctive personalities and backgrounds. The age-gap romance is slow-burn and sweet, with very well-written chemistry in which opposites attract. The sex scenes have all the ingredients known to Ms. Hill: they are hot, sensual and romantic all at the same time.
The landscape of Corpus Christi (Texas Gulf Coast) with its beautiful beaches and bay area is a frequent feature in Ms. Hill’s romances. By setting this novel during wintertime with its foggy and cloudy days, however, the author sets the perfect tone for the mystery. The depiction of the impoverished neighbourhoods where most of the action takes part also contributes towards an eerie backdrop and makes a great contrast with the most affluent areas which the Gulf Coast is known for.
Having read and loved this book, I’ve now listened to the audiobook version narrated by Cassandra York. I’m very impressed with her performance, the pace and tone of her narration were exactly right for both fast-paced action scenes and the sweet romance. All the characters’ voices were distinctive which helped a lot because this novel has a lot of dialogue as the investigation progresses and to build the chemistry between the mains. I liked how her performance of both leads matched their personalities; while Rylee sounded youthful and carefree, Finley appeared more mature and serious. The written novel was already very good, Ms. York made it even better.
Overall, a very entertaining and page-turning lesbian mystery audiobook with a sweet, slow-burn romance at the side. 5 stars.