I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Show and Tell, the third book in Amy Shojai’s thriller series featuring animal behaviorist September Day, her dog Shadow and cat Macy and a cast of other cats and dogs. I knew from reading the first two books in the series to set aside some uninterrupted time, because I found them impossible to put down once I started.
From the publisher:
With her stalker finally caught, animal behaviorist September Day’s PTSD has abated and she’s begun to trust again. She dares to hope Detective Jeff Combs might become more than a friend, until his investigation into a dogfighting ring leaves her reeling. Shadow wrestles his own demons. A German Shepherd autism service dog before losing his-boy to a health crises, Shadow found love and his true purpose working with September. Now his-boy is back–but changed–and Shadow fears he’ll be forced to choose. When a desperate mom demands help, and Combs’s son disappears with his dog, September and Shadow must find the children before a devastating storm hits. But the children have a secret plan of their own. Only when September shows true courage, and a good-dog tells the truth, can they find their way home again.
Amy has ratcheted up the tension in this installment – something I didn’t think was possible after reading the first two. Even though there are fewer plot twists in this one, there’s a sense of urgency to this book, a sense that is made even more intense by the fact that the plot is set against a background of extreme weather ranging from floods to thunderstorms to tornadoes. In fact, at times, the weather puts September into far more dire predicaments than the bad guys. For someone like me, who doesn’t deal well with extreme weather, some of the passages in the book were truly terrifying – a testament to Amy’s skill as a writer.
This book has everything a good thriller should have: tension, unpredictability, well-developed characters. But it also has something that your average thriller doesn’t have: the animals. Parts of the book are written from Shadow’s point of view, and I’ve come to love this dog through these passages as if I had met him in real life. Throughout the book, the author’s extensive knowledge of animal behavior and animal emotions is apparent. Amy even added a “fact and fiction” section at the end of the book, explaining what’s real and what’s fantasy.
If you’re a fan of medical thrillers by the likes of Tess Gerritsen, Robin Cook or Michael Palmer, you will absolutely love this book. If you enjoy a well-written mystery featuring a lot of animals, you will also love it. Just don’t plan on picking it up unless you have some extra free time. Show and Tell can be read as a standalone book, but why deprive yourself of the thrill ride of reading all three books?
Amy Shojai is the bestselling author of more than two dozen pet books. Visit AmyShojai.com for more information.
I received a review copy of this book from the author. Receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.