I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Flight by Laura GriffinFlight by Laura Griffin
Series: The Texas Murder Files #2
Published by berkley on March 30, 2021
Pages: 352
Format: eBook
Source: NetGalley
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When former forensic photographer Miranda Rhoads moves to the seaside town of Lost Beach, she's decided to make her living as a wildlife photographer and put crime scenes behind her. But her plans are quickly upended when one morning, she comes across a couple sleeping in a canoe, entwined in an embrace. Looking closer, she realizes the man and woman aren't asleep – they've been murdered.

Detective Joel Breda sets out to find answers – not only about the unidentified victims in the marshy death scene, but also about the aloof and beautiful photographer who seems to know more about his investigation than he does.

As they begin to unravel the motivation of a merciless serial killer, Miranda and Joel must race against the clock to make an arrest before the killer can find them first.

This is my first Laura Griffin book, and it will definitely not be my last. I really enjoyed how she set the story. It was descriptive without getting bogged down, and intriguing without trying too hard. She balances romance with a suspenseful plot.

Miranda Rhoads is out at dawn trying to get a shot of some wild birds in the wetlands. She’s got a job as a nature photographer and she’s trying to get photographs for a calendar assignment she has lined up. But as she’s getting closer to the birds, she finds something else. Two bodies.

Detective Joel Breda doesn’t know what to think of his witness, but when he finds out she took pictures of the bodies, that bumps her to the top of his suspect list. His town is fairly peaceful, no murders, sometimes petty theft, with the only real excitement being a recent environmental protest. So the stranger taking photographs of dead bodies is instantly suspicious.

But Miranda is a CSI on hiatus. She’s in Lost Beach, TX to photograph birds, not bodies. But she can’t get the image of the entwined bodies out of her head. Something is nagging her about their deaths. This case begins to get dangerous as she looks into it, though. She’s offered the job as Lost Beach’s CSI since they need one and she’s very qualified. She says no at first, but between Joel asking her, and the case not letting go of her, Miranda takes the job.

As the small town police department works day and night, they find another body and start to wonder if they have a serial killer on their shores. Miranda is thinking outside the box though and starts in on their first solid leads…and it leads to their worst fear. A serial killer. When Miranda is targeted, Joel does everything he can to keep her safe. Moving her into his house seems like a smart idea, and he’s going to try to keep his hands off her, but she might put her hands on him.

I enjoyed the two of them and how they fell for each other. They both felt real and organic. The mystery didn’t overshadow the romance; it was well-balanced. I loved this author’s voice and style, and I bought the first book in the series already. I’m very excited to read more by her.

***Review copy provided by the publisher via Netgalley