Jessie Mercado Book 1
Grand Central Publishing
March 8th, 2022
Killer View by Roy Johansen is a spinoff from the bestselling Kendra Michaels series he writes with the legendary author, Iris Johansen, who happens to be his mom. He has gone solo in writing Jessie Mercado’s story, a private investigator who is a friend and colleague of Kendra.
“I read an article about a former suspect in a murder investigation who ran a service to help with the logistics of those going to prison. A lot of white-collar people who committed crimes will use someone like that, but also well financed thugs. It is different from person to person regarding the services offered. I had Jessie, a private investigator, have one of her clients who has a similar company, Personal Incarceration Consultant.”
Kendra Michaels is a San Diego music therapist who uses her powers of observation and deduction to help law enforcement investigators solve cases. In the Michaels’ series Jessie helps in solving some crimes using her own rules.
“I wrote Jessie with a colorful past including a war hero in Afghanistan, found fame on this athletic game show, like “American Ninjas,” and became the head of security for a very famous pop star, all this before becoming a PI. Her father is also a veteran. She is independent, competitive, takes initiative, smart, headstrong, takes risks including driving her motorcycle, very loyal, strong physically and mentally, basically Wonder Woman and Electra. I guess I had DC and Marvel covered.”
This book has Kendra introducing Jessie to a new client. Owen Blake is the co-owner of an incarceration consultancy, which handles financial and personal needs for people serving prison time. After he hires her to find his missing partner, Jessie becomes suspicious that something bad has happened to the partner. She realizes the suspect list is filled with former and current clients including white-collar criminals, a few drug kingpins, and a couple of murderers to keep things interesting. She’s assisted by her new boyfriend, Jake Brice, considered “the hottest actor on the planet,” who puts the skills he has honed working on Marvel Superhero movies. Together they must hunt down the lethal secrets of Blake’s company, hell-bent on staying one step ahead of disaster.
Brice is a veteran who was tortured in Afghanistan. His new career is a major movie star. He has a sense of humor, independent, determined, persuasive, protective, thoughtful, and sociable. He and Jessie have a lot in common. All these traits also apply to her. The white streak in his hair developed after his military service. It is more psychological from his time in the military. It is now a trademark of his. It will be explored more in later books. In a way it is almost a badge of honor for him.”
Readers get to know Jessie’s backstory better. They meet her father, James, a veteran, and her “boyfriend” Jake Brice. In the last couple of chapter Kendra is front and center as she helps Jessie solve the case by using her sensory magic.
This is a fast-paced action-packed story. The plot has humor, charm, and suspense, with a smidge of romance.