Review: Double Take (By J.P. David)

Double Take Source: Goodreads

      Double Take
Source: Goodreads

Length: 229 pages

My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Hank Hammond is the latest P.I. on the block. Not young by any stretch of imagination, Hank has had years of experience as Security Manager of W-L’s, a department store chain. Dedication to his job and vigilance on duty ended up with him cracking a high profile case that gave him the cash advantage he’d always wanted. And that’s how Hank Hammond, P.I., came into being. But what is a brand new P.I. supposed to do when he has all the gadgets, the Corvette, the beautiful assistant and the office (if that’s what you can call it), but no case?

The answer is simple – follow the detective instincts you’ve always had!

That’s how Hank Hammond got his first case with an eccentric millionaire who harbors a dislike for the cops. What follows is Hank’s attempt to solve a case that gives him more dead people than he’d like, more smirks from his assistant than he cares for and more chaos than he ever anticipated. And when the bad guys, the cops and the recently released convicts who Hank had helped get into prison are all after him, Hank is thrown into a game he really needs to win… if he wants to solve his case… and stay alive.

My take:

Double take was everything a good detective novel needs to be. It was full of who-dun-it thought inspiring scenarios, mysterious circumstances that throw your guesses into a tussle, a detective who is in way over his head and a beautiful assistant who tries to save him from drowning! Throw in a couple of dead bodies, multiple close calls and a relaxed attitude that belies circumstances, and you have the thoroughly enjoyable novel that is not all that easy to put away.

J.P. David chose the first person style of writing, a choice that few make and one that not too many readers like. But even if you are one of those who doesn’t like first person, this book may help change your mind. The story flows really smoothly, each seemingly random part making sense before you know it. The twists and turns, which make any good suspense novel better, are not shell shocking as such, but are definitely surprising and do leave you wondering. The number of characters that the author introduces can get a bit cumbersome to keep track of, especially if you are in the habit of leaving a book aside for days before you resume reading. However, J.P. David has written a story gripping enough that you wouldn’t want to leave it aside for too long; so catching up with the characters is not too difficult.

The best part about the book is, of course, Hank Hammond, detective (not-too) extraordinaire and all round gentleman who just wants to make his dream job come true when he finally gets a shot at it.

Hank Hammond is not your traditional hero-who-can-do-no-wrong kind of character. He is a realistic one who has his flaws, who knows his limitations and who has problems of his own. And that is the best part of him. He’s a character who makes the best of what he’s got, he’s someone who challenges his limitations and he’s someone who will go ahead and do what needs to be done, unaffected by doubt or a bad past experience. Then, you have Lori Reed, his know-it-all assistant who helps him when she can, but not without her patented, derisive smirk! Full of spunk, Lori’s a character that leaves you wishing that there was more of her to read about.

What I absolutely loved was the great chemistry between Hank and Lori. The two characters, so different from each other, learn to work with, and around, each other with every passing day and hour. Watching their tumultuous relationship evolve was one of the main reasons to keep the pages turning – it came with almost as many twists and turns as the case itself!

All in all, a great read! It moves fast and really smoothly, with its share of great humor that has you laughing out loud on many occasions! I would recommend Double Take to anyone who enjoys a good detective/suspense novel and anyone who’s looking for something light, yet engaging, to read. I thoroughly enjoyed Hank Hammond’s first adventure and am going to be looking out for the next one in this series. I just wish J.P. David would hurry it up!

– Rishika

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