By Jaime Lynn Hendricks
I couldn’t wait to read this book. I had such high hopes.
A story about writers at a thriller writer’s conference and there is a murder. What’s not to love?
I loved the premise. One of the nominees is found stabbed to death the day before the big ceremony announcing the winner.
Four authors are targeted by someone on Twitter. It looks as if one of them is guilty of murdering Kristen Bailey.
One is a narcissistic rising star, one is a fellow nominee for the award, one is a big author whose star is fading out, and one is a newbie that no one really knows anything about.
Clues slowly emerge. The newbie has been stalking Kristen. It was so bad Kristen had a restraining order.
The fellow nominee’s boyfriend is sleeping with Kristen.
The fading star collaborated on a book with Kristen that would have been his comeback and the newbie attempted to make it look like she had a one-night stand with the fading star.
The Tweets start making the four authors question each other. One by one, they begin to think each of them could be the killer. They start becoming paranoid but for their own reasons, mainly publicity, they refuse to go to the authorities. They think they can figure it out. Why not, they are all thriller writers.
It all builds up to a climax at the end that wasn’t totally expected.
Usually, the first thing that attracts me to a book is the cover. I didn’t like this cover, but I did like the premise.
It was well written. The plot was interesting.
It did feel like I was attending a writer’s conference. They do have that clique atmosphere. I have attended many writer’s conferences over the years, mainly for the writer’s workshops and it is exciting to be sitting in a workshop and have an author you love presenting. Most authors are friendly but some you know not to approach. I can see where the wrong personalities could clash, and this book did portray that aspect of conferences convincingly.
I couldn’t get myself to like any of the characters. They were all pretty much a hot mess, except Mike Brooks. He seemed to be the most believable.
I am not sure why this book didn’t satisfy me. I think the climax was a little underwhelming. We find out what really happened and then at the end is another little surprise. (I can’t say more without spoilers.)
This book was written with moments of humor. I like that but I wonder if the humor sometimes dampened the suspense. It sometimes felt like the author was really working to get that laugh. I got the humor, but I never had a laugh out loud moment.
Because most of the story was told through social media, it felt like there wasn’t that much action. Instead of following the characters through the story, I felt like I was a voyeur looking over their shoulders as they read what was happening on their phones. I think that is what made me not enjoy this read so much.
It is an interesting concept, and I would advise anyone who likes thrillers, stories about writers, and murder to read it. It wasn’t bad but it just wasn’t as much fun as I had hoped it would be.
I rated this book 3 stars.
This is rare for a three-star review for me, but I plan to keep it and read it again someday. Maybe it was more when I read it than what I read. I will also look for other books by this new-to-me author.
Title: I Didn’t Do It
Author: Jaime Lynn Hendricks
Year Published: May 23, 2023
Pages: 312 hardcover
Rating: Goodreads 3.93
Setting: A hotel in New York City
I did see that there is an interview with this author on a YouTube channel. I plan to watch it. I am not sure about my rating, and I am thinking if I hear more about how she came about writing this book, it might make more sense to me. I am thinking most of my writer friends would enjoy this book. Even though I couldn’t give it a 4- or 5-star rating, I did enjoy reading it. It is worth a read, and I think it might make you feel better about missing out on writers’ conferences in the past few years.
Do you write? Have you ever attended a writer’s conference? Did you enjoy it? Could you see a murder there?
Now off in search of my next read,