FINDING RACHEL DAVENPORT by MICHAEL HARLING.
SOURCE: Received from Shooting Star Mag.
Rachel Davenport - former child prodigy, world-class gymnast and Miss Teen England - has retired from public life and lives in a small town, working as a clerk for a travel agency. By night, however, Rachel is a self-styled crime-fighter, seeking to right the wrongs inflicted on people who cannot help themselves.
But when her first mission goes horribly awry she finds herself pursued, not merely by the media, but by the police and an assortment of criminals who want her silenced. To preserve her anonymity, as well as her life, Rachel must prove to the police that she is one of the good guys and keep one step ahead of the bad guys, all while avoiding nosey neighbours, holding onto her job and juggling two would-be suitors.
..... Outer back cover.
FIRST SENTENCE (Chapter 1): If I hadn't accidentally blown up Keymer View Court, things might have turned out differently.
MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 98): "So you're saying this woman believes herself to be a comic book superhero, like Wonder Woman?"
"Oh yes, except she doesn't have an invisible plane. She has a car."
MY THOUGHTS: Picked this up expecting a gritty crime thriller? Then there's every chance you'll be disappointed. However, picked this up wanting a quirky, tongue-in-cheek read and you are in for a treat.
Of course there is nothing original about female superheroes. Indeed Rachel Davenport also goes by the name of Nadia Penric in homage of Diana Prince alias Wonder Woman. However in Rachel/Nadia we have a unique and very modern creation. A one time beauty queen and three times winner of Mastermind who, 'not that smart, just knows a lot of stuff', she fancies herself as a something of a vigilante out to solve crime in what is quite frankly an implausible and yet fun story.
My only criticism being that once again here we have a novel in which 'Americanisms' start to creep in. And OK whilst it could be argued that such Americanised expressions now form part of the English vocabulary I'm afraid it just doesn't sit well with me and in this instance made the character of the otherwise very English Rachel seem less authentic.
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