Crime Fiction Book Review: The Last Girl

The Last Girl (Maeve Kerrigan, #3)The Last Girl by Jane Casey
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I wanted to like this more than I did. The Maeve Kerrigan series is a British police procedural with a female protagonist, so it should be up my alley. I read an earlier book in the series, THE RECKONING, and liked it well enough to try another. Now that I’ve read THE LAST GIRL, I understand why I’m having trouble warming up to this series. Both books start off with a bang. The author hooks us with a great premise, in this case, a mother and teen daughter murdered, a father left injured, and the other daughter coming in from the backyard to discover the bodies. The problem is, as the investigation continues, the novel switches over to long interludes concerning Maeve’s not particularly interesting relationship with her perfectly average boyfriend, and her continuing struggles combatting sexism on the job. Sexism is a real problem in the work world, but in these novels, the author seems to pull episodes out of a hat to suit her whim. Some days everyone’s getting along professionally and then suddenly someone accuses Maeve of sleeping her way to the top, or someone treats her like a little lost lamb in need of protection. The incidents simply don’t feel real. In the meantime, the actual plot gets forgotten. I had the murders solved way ahead of Maeve, and I really don’t care much about her boyfriend or her sexism issues. So I think I’m done with this series.

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