Book Review: Going to the Bad by Nora McFarland

The following review originally appeared on Book End Babes, a website devoted to a love of reading and to learning about new authors.

When Going to the Bad was up for review I snatched it up within seconds of being posted. And boy am I glad I did. I love a great mystery, but this was unlike any other mystery I have read before.

From the back cover: “Working as a TV news photographer at her hometown television station, Lilly had documented Bakersfield’s most violent crimes and tragic accidents. To stay sane and avoid burnout, she’s developed a wicked sense of humor and a very thick skin. For her, a vicious shooting is just another day on the job. But what if the victim is someone she loves?

Thrown off balance by the brutal attack on her uncle Bud in her own home, Lilly decides to handle the tragedy the only way she knows how. Using all her TV station’s resources and her own considerable skills, Lilly dives headlong into the investigation.

But even with the assistance of her well-meaning but eccentric coworkers, this story may prove her last. Because as Lilly untangles a history of her uncle’s misdeeds and betrayals, a clever killer is preparing to strike again. Can she break the story in time to prevent another murder, or will Lilly be the next victim?”

I loved the character of Lilly Hawkins! She’s strong, fearless and thinks of the story before she thinks of herself. As a trained journalist myself, I couldn’t help but appreciate how Lilly continued to dig and dig and dig until she uncovered as mess of illegal activities, mistreatment, coverups, love and family secrets.

I think many of us can relate to Lilly’s diving herself into something else in the face of tragedy, as both a distraction and as part of the need to do something that matters in a time of uncertainty. I think that McFarland has done a great job of incorporating that theme through out the novel.

This novel wouldn’t be anything without its supporting characters and the chaos that surrounds them. What novel would be complete without a best friend, supportive boss, police officers, a boyfriend and a goof ball. Love the characters of Ted, Callum and Freddy. But my favorite character of all: Thing. You must read the book to appreciate this character.

The entire novel takes place over the course of two days, which blows my mind, but is not surprising in the world of journalism. If you pick up this novel, which I suggest you should, make sure you are paying attention! There are a lot of characters and if you decide to even skim one page, you might miss something very important to the overall plot of the story.

This was the last of the Lilly Hawkins mysteries, which is unfortunate. I look forward to reading the first two novels of the trilogy. In fact, they are in my Amazon box right now. I look forward to seeing what other characters Nora McFarland will create, but I really hope that one day she decides to bring back Lilly for more action!

Have you ever read a mystery that didn’t have the huge twists and turns, but had small twists that built up to something interesting?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s