Review: Blindsided by Kate Watterson

Title: Blindsided by Kate Watterson
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 225 pages
Book Rating: C+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


A young woman encounters the killer she accused years earlier—and finds herself drawn back into a vortex of evil she thought she’d left far behind her.

A decade after Cadence Lawrence accused the perpetrator in the brutal murder of her high school friend, she’s finally put the nightmare to rest. But the ghosts of her past won’t rest, and an unexpected encounter with the killer reawakens demons she thought were long dead. Gripped by paranoia, Cadence fears she’s being stalked, and suspects that the murderer has invaded the sanctity of her home. Could her chance encounter have rekindled the savage rage that claimed the life of her friend and now threatens Cadence herself?

Half-crazed with fear, Cadence takes flight, but instead of finding sanctuary, she runs headlong into one of the worst snowstorms to blast northern Wisconsin in years. Stranded, freezing, and alone, Cadence confronts her worst nightmare—until deliverance comes in the form of a stranger who rescues her and offers shelter from the blinding storm. But something is not altogether right with her savior, and Cadence is faced with another impossible dilemma. Should she trust this enigmatic stranger, or once again flee for her life? In the midst of an unrelenting storm, the walls are closing in on Cadence.


Blindsided by Kate Watterson is a fast-paced mystery.

Fleeing her stalker, Cadence Lawrence ignores the weather report and finds herself stranded in the midst of a heavy snowstorm.  Despite her uneasiness, she has no choice but to accompany her unexpected rescuer Mick McCutcheon to his upscale but rustic cabin.  Cadence trusts her instincts where Mick is concerned and she eventually opens up about why she left home. Mick feels protective of Cadence and once the roads are clear, he goes with her when she returns to her regular life. Still worried about her safety, Cadence agrees to meet with FBI Agent Thea Benedict and Detective Kirkland to discuss her long missing childhood friend Melissa Dewitt’s cold case.  Certain the same man who is responsible for Melissa’s disappearance is also her stalker, Cadence remains afraid for her life. Can Mick, Thea and Kirkland keep her safe? Or will she become his next victim?

Cadence is an orthopedic surgeon who has still not gotten over Melissa’s disappearance thirteen years earlier. She is convinced Melissa’s boyfriend, Dirk Lyons, murdered her when she tried to end their relationship.  The case has long grown cold but when Cadence accidentally crosses paths with Dirk again, she is certain he is stalking her.  When she stumbles across a listening device, Cadence grows even more fearful of his next move.

FBI Agent Thea Benedict is working at the behest of a Texas Congressman who is certain Dirk is involved with his daughter’s unexplained disappearance. Thea is eager to work the case since she has her own reasons for locating Dirk.  Harboring suspicions Dirk might be a serial killer, she begins searching for other possible victims. Her research pays off and there is now  greater urgency to locate him. But Dirk has plenty of practice covering his tracks so Thea and Detective Kirkland cannot help but wonder if they will find him before he kills again.

The mystery aspect of the storyline is a bit overshadowed by Cadence’s and Mick’s burgeoning romance. Mick is a charming man and Cadence feels safe with him, but her independent nature is sometimes at war with his need to protect her.  Their relationship has an insta-love vibe to it since they do not know each other long before declaring their love to one another. They are a cute couple but the balance between romance and suspense is definitely tilted more toward their  newfound love especially since there really is not any mystery surrounding who is after Cadence.

Blindsided is an engaging mystery but some of dialogue is a little stilted and the characters could be better developed. The premise of the novel is interesting but the story lacks much suspense.  Without much fanfare, Kate Watterson brings the novel to a satisfying (but a bit predictable) conclusion. Enjoyable but definitely more romance than mystery.

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