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Cold Betrayal - Book Review

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Cold Betrayal

Author: A.J. McCarthy
Genre: Fiction - Thriller - General
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Date Published: January 17, 2019
ISBN-10: 168433196X
ISBN-13: 9781684331963

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GoodReads Rating:
4.03

Book Review of :  Cold Betrayal



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What would motivate a young secretary to drive a clunker from sunny Florida to Quebec, Canada, in January? Cold Betrayal by A. J. McCarthy follows Tori Anderson on her so-called vacation. The novel chronicles how fateful choices can often result in harrowing consequences. Naïve and trusting, Tori optimistically begins a suspenseful quest to rescue Danny Wilcox, but from what?  Her involvement in this endeavor, however, leads to murder attempts on her  They really want her dead; they don’t just try to kill her once or twice but three times.

Cold Betrayal is a mystery-misadventure novel that is well crafted. The mystery, intrigue and fast action plot are relieved from high suspense by brief smatterings of realistic romance. All the while Tori’s existence was imploding.

Tori is a “can take care of myself”, impulsive young lady who admits that her mission of mercy has ‘been a farce of her own making.” Arriving in Quebec, Canada from Florida, she finds herself with inappropriate attire for the freezing weather of her new northern residence. To complicate her life, even more, she doesn’t understand the French language spoken in Quebec, and unfortunately, she is also a gullible, naive young woman. Her biggest cross to bear is her unflagging loyalty to Danny Wilcox, a drug lord sought by the local police in Quebec, who she is determined to rescue from himself. Tori is offered “police protection” for her assistance in their investigation of crimes associated with Danny. Her staid responses to their requests are troublesome.

Unique characters include Danny Wilcox whose actions proves that he can conduct his illegal business just as ruthlessly and dangerously as the worst drug lord. Can Tori leave him to a destiny of his own making? Why does she care so much for him? Other intriguing characters like Jeff, a conflicted police officer, enrich the fast-paced action-filled story.

The culture of Quebec during Winter Carnival adds to the color of the characters as does the author’s use of short phrases in French. However, the English reader would benefit from loose translations of the French into English.

The plot spirals as Tori becomes responsible for the deaths of several men. Her physical scars, aches, and bruises from the attempts on her life would heal and disappear, but the emotional scars from her involvement in the deaths of the gangsters would be harder for her heart and spirit to handle.

Conflict and romance affect Tori’s loyalties. A. J. McCarthy creates some dilemmas for Tori, will she have to choose between the lives of Danny and Jeff? Can she sacrifice one life to save the other? Beware of the heroine’s struggle, her staid responses to the requests of the local police and her connection to the drug lord.  Cold Betrayal’s unexpected conclusion is a fitting finale for this excellent novel.


Reviewed by: carol

About A.J. McCarthy


A.J. McCarthy is the author of two published novels, Betrayal, and Sins of the Fathers, along with numerous works in progress. She was born in Quebec, Canada and remained there to build a career in finance and accounting, and to raise her two daughters along with her husband. Now, she enjoys the new and diverse challenges and learning experiences involved with writing.





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