Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Review # 296: Endangered ~ A Death on a Deadline Mystery by Kate Jaimet

Description: (book jacket)

          Hayley Makk. She’s the kind of girl who talks tough, bleeds ink, and can handle the discovery of a dead body with sang froid―even if she is only seventeen. But she’s pulled off her first big scoop (which involves an isolated shack spattered in human blood) by her dad, who sends her instead on a research trip with her former biology teacher, Ms. Cameron, to locate and study a rare sea turtle and earn the final credit for her high school diploma. Hayley reluctantly embarks on the science assignment, accompanied by a socially clueless fellow-student, Ernest, who turns out to be a tree-hugger of the first degree. They spot the turtle, but can’t tag the elusive creature. The voyage takes a sinister twist when a fishing boat appears, apparently intent on capturing the turtle at any cost. When shots are fired, Ms. Cameron halts the expedition and returns to Halifax. Back on the story of the blood-streaked shack, Hayley learns from nineteen-year-old RCMP Constable Alex Turpin that the cops believe a local teen was murdered there in a botched drug deal. Hayley uncovers a connection between the murder and the rare sea turtle, and discovers that there are other kinds of things that can be trafficked illegally besides drugs.

          When I spied the cover art for Kate Jaimet's Endangered, I knew I wanted to read it! I love turtles, so the fact that there was a particularly curious looking sea turtle on the front cover intrigued me. When I received the book I jumped right in, immediately thrust into the daily life of Hayley, a seventeen year-old that would rather be a novice journalist than graduate high school. Personality-wise, Hayley is a little brash, her "tough-guy", punk-rock exterior every parent's nightmare, but she knows what she wants and is not afraid to go for it - even if it involves a little blood, and/ or a dangerous situation. Being a biology enthusiast, I was appalled that she'd forfeit her diploma for the reasons she gave, but I liked how driven she was when it came to doing something she was passionate about, so I accepted it; especially since it led to such an interesting plot-line. Overall, I enjoyed the character interactions, particularly between Hayley and her sources, however, I wasn't too keen on her relationship with Alex (the underage drinking scene didn't help). Alex didn't have a well-developed personality, so his whole role was kind of blasé. A little bit more background on him would have put me more at ease since I am not sure what his real intentions were. As for the plot, I thought it was well-written, original, and had enough twists to keep readers interested. I just wish that there had been less attention paid to journalism terminology and maybe more emphasis on Hayley's background and relationships. That said, I definitely wouldn't mind reading more Hayley Makk mysteries, and recommend the book to older teens seeking a fast-paced summer read.

Rating: Bounty's Out (3.5/5)

*** I received this book from the author/ publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

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