Sunday, April 08, 2007

Deadly Advice

Roberta Isleib introduces an Advice Column series with Deadly Advice, but I don't know how qualified Dr. Rebecca Butterman actually is to offer that advice. Butterman might be a psychologist, but she's very unsure of herself. She might write the "Late Bloomer" advice column, but her own life is a mess. She has her own problems, including a mother who committed suicide, and a divorce because she caught her husband cheating. How equipped is she to help others?

Isabel Stanton thinks Rebecca can help her. Isabel's daughter, Madeline, was a neighbor of Rebecca's until she was found dead in her condo. The verdict was suicide, but Isabel didn't believe it because the suicide note did not sound like her daughter. Rebecca feels sorry for Isabel, so she agrees to do a little checking.

She soon finds that her latest job for an on-line magazine, exploring the singles scene, is related to Madeline's personal life. Rebecca finds herself speed dating, and meeting strange men in order to find out more about Madeline.

Rebecca Butterman was described as bolting off half-cocked, and, unfortunately, I felt that she did this in Deadly Advice. As a therapist, she was a mess, in my opinion, and I had a hard time accepting that. As an amateur detective, she took too many chances. Deadly Advice could have been Rebecca's own undoing.

Roberta Isleib's website is

Deadly Advice by Roberta Isleib. Berkley Prime Crime, ©2007. ISBN 9780425214749 (paperback), 272p.

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