The story begins with a prologue, where a mysterious man walks around town at one in the morning, since he is aware that the residents keep the town safe, and that most of them are inside their homes. He enters the home of a woman, whose husband is out of town. After checking his surroundings, and seeing that no one else was around, he murders the woman while she is asleep.
The next chapter cuts to a retired FBI agent, Kate Wise, who looks through old pictures of her from her younger years. She goes to a bar and meets two other retired women, Clarissa and Jane, who she hopes will help her cope with her retirement. She discovers that they know a person named Deb, who might be able to provide more information about the murderer.
Kate visits Deb, who has just been crying due to losing her daughter, Julie Meade, from a mysterious murderer, the same person the man killed in earlier in the narrative and thinks it might have been her ex-boyfriend. Deb adds that the police do not know who has killed her daughter. Kate contacts a few old connections, but cannot promise anything to Deb.
She almost calls Clarence Green, the deputy commissioner of the Virginia State Police Department until he shows up. Kate tells him about the situation, but he refuses to help her. So, she investigates on her own.
The prologue intrigued me as it set up the tone for the opening of a murder mystery, which is typical for this genre. I admired how the point-of-view of the unnamed man described the townspeople and how they took care of the town.
I also routed for Kate and her ambitions to find out who had murdered Julie Meade. She did not care that she was retired, and thus, no longer qualified to perform the tasks she’d done when she worked as an agent. This kept my curiosity, as it does with any fictional character who does the wrong thing or disobeys an authority.
One scene that stood out to me was when Kate met Julie’s ex-boyfriend, Brian Neil Bolt, fought, because he would not reveal any information about the night where Julie was murdered. And he was rude, cursing at her, as well.
When Kate and Brian fought, it reminded me of violent, but humorous fights that I have seen in movies. It intensified more, and enough to disturb me.
Which brings me to the parts I disliked. Aside from Brian being rude to Kate, despite her firmness toward him, I also did not agree with Officer Green refusing to help Kate investigate the murder. It made me feel worse for Kate, especially because she hated being retired.
Commissioner Green, also showed up right when Kate was about to call him on her phone. I am not fond of deus ex machina moments, although I suppose this was necessary for the plot.
Yet, I still enjoyed this book, and discovered that I like murder mysteries.
Note that this book has mature language and some violence. It’s intended for adults, but if you have an older teenager, like someone who is 16 or 17, you could consider this story for them. As long as the he/they/she is very mature, the content should not be an issue.
I rate If She Knew 4 out of 5 stars.