Just months before Hawaii's gubernatorial primary election, a body is found on the floor of the open air capitol, a macabre scene specifically manipulated to draw attention to a sitting governor with waning political support. Frantic, he calls on the Honolulu Chief of Police Walter Tseng, demanding that the perpetrator be brought to justice as swiftly and silently as possible, fearful a scandal might destroy whatever chance he still has at gaining re-election.

Blackmailed into complicity and unable to draw from his active force, Tseng calls in Kalani Lewis, a young detective three months off the job. Still battling her own demons from an investigation that resulted in the death of her partner, Kalani is forced back into action, pulled into a life she isn’t certain she still wants to be a part of, a family friend that was once a military policeman and now a full-time surfer as her only support.

Inch by inch they work their way through the investigation, navigating mounting crime scenes and intense bureaucratic pressures as the election looms ever closer, the killer growing more emboldened by the day… (Summary and book cover courtesy of


I really enjoyed this book and I want to emphasize that because mysteries are not something I naturally gravitate to.  This book has an interesting twist because while you have a fairly good sense of “who-done-it” early on, it’s difficult to determine who that person really is and it’s the WHY you are on the edge of your seat to figure out.  Stevens did a great job with the investigation integrated with the backdrop Hawaiian culture.

Kalani is the main characters and I found her intriguing.  She is still recovering from a traumatic event with her former partner and is forced to face her fears.  My one complaint is that I would have liked to learn more about her surfer partner or have seen if there was a future for the two of them.  Randle (the governor) is deliciously detestable and I enjoyed the scenes that included his ridiculousness.  All in all this was a great mystery that I would not hesitate to recommend. 

Warning: Contains some graphic descriptions (murder victims).

Please note: I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review courtesy of the author.

Rating: 4 stars!

Who should read it? Mystery fans looking for a different twist!

Want more?  Check out my interview with the author!