Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Possessing Morgan by Erica Lawson

Publisher:            Blue Feather Books

Detective Morgan O'Callaghan isn't happy.  New York City appears to have gone on holiday for the summer and that means she's stuck doing paperwork, something she really hates.  When she finally gets a case it involves a famous financier who may have murdered a member of his household staff.  It also brings her in contact with the new Assistant District Attorney Andrea Worthington.  Morgan immediately dismisses Andrea as a straight spoiled Southern rich girl, but she's powerfully drawn to her.  Their work on the case is distracted by more than one attempt on Andy's life and Morgan finds herself trying to solve two mysteries at once.  Or, are the cases connected somehow?  Whatever the truth, Morgan and Andy come to realize that they are facing deadly forces and quickly solving one puzzle may lead to the solution of the other.   

Meanwhile, both women find themselves facing personal challenges.  Morgan must overcome her past and learn to trust another person while Andy struggles to free herself from the domination of her family and the future they think is appropriate for her.  Ultimately, they have to decide if they are the answer to each other's situation

Possessing Morgan is Erica Lawson's first book, but she shows more ability in her writing than most first time authors.  The characters are well developed and complex without being stereotypical.  The plot flows smoothly and has enough twists to keep the reader wondering what really is going on in the story.  Lawson has created a strong cast of supporting characters, including Morgan's partner and his family, and a police detective who is thoroughly unlikeable in his bigotry and arrogance.  The hardest characters to write must be the ones you know the reader won't like, so the author has to make them more believable than any others.  Lawson achieves that.  There are some parts of the story that are somewhat contrived.  At the end the two mysteries come together in a way that hardly seems possible in a city the size of New York, but this is fiction.  Lawson ties together several strands to create a very enjoyable book.

Possessing Morgan is an excellent first effort, which was proven when it won an award from the Golden Crown Literary Society.   The book is engaging and the type that you want to keep reading.  It certainly should generate interest in Erica Lawson's next book whenever it comes out.

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