The Reckless Engineer
Author: Jac Wright
Genre: Legal Thriller
Year of Publication: 2013
So Mr. Wright contacted me through my e-mail asking me to review his book. Here we are now, with a review for it. I read it as an e-copy, and no, the fact that I got a copy for free does NOT influence this review and the ultimate rating I will give it in the end. There's my required disclaimer, get off my back about that kind of thing, cause I'm not a practicer of the idea that books get bonus points if they're free review copies. I give my full on honest opinion for every book I review, especially here in my world.
Normally I don't do this, but this book actually falls under multiple genres and since I have a bit more info on it, I'll give it to you. For anyone who is on goodreads or who likes to keep detailed records of books they read or if you're super into one of these genres and therefore MUST read this now. The Reckless Engineer falls under the following categories:
- Literary Suspense
- Romantic Suspense
- Legal Thriller
- Psychological Thriller
- British Mystery
What is this Book About?
The Reckless Engineer is about a guy who's had way too many affairs for his own good! (Ok, fine, maybe it was just 3...but that's too many anyhow). Jack Connor is technically the guy who this story revolves around, even though the main character, and the one we see most, is his best friend Jeremy Stone. Jack has a son from a well ended marriage with his first wife, Marianne. He is currently married to Caitlin, whose father owns the company that Jack works for and who is also rich...as in billionaire heiress rich. He is an engineer who has been having an affair with a coworker (also an engineer) named Sally. The major problem lies with the fact that he's having ANOTHER affair with a girl named Michelle Williams who also works at the same company, but not as an engineer. Trouble was inevitable to begin with, but this trouble is even worse considering Jack has gotten Michelle pregnant and then she ends up being found dead. Who would've thought? The whole book is centered on the idea that Jack is innocent and needs his friend Jeremy (another engineer with a lawyer friend who can represent Jack) to find the real killer.
I normally wouldn't read books involving infidelity....considering that infidelity is a plot point that I just really hate. However, I was able to get beyond it and just read the book.
There are a lot of characters in this book. I felt fortunate that I didn't get any of them mixed up. There are the main few (Jack, Caitlin, Jeremy, Harry), as well as the extended family and related characters (Peter, Marianne, Mr. McAllen, Mr. McAllen's associates, the servants) and even more (McAllen's handymen, police officials, Jack's boss, and plenty extras). I think that's partially what helps make this story work. There are so many characters that at first it's almost overwhelming trying to consider which one killed Michelle. However, it's also a bit distracting, because only a few actually feel very well developed. I could care less about Jack. He was a scumbag who honestly got what was coming to him. You cheat, you open yourself to all the consequences, no matter how extreme the outcome. Jeremy was actually a pretty good character. I enjoyed him as a character. He didn't seem as scummy. He was a more relatable character trying to figure out where he was going to fit into everything going on in his life. The only thing I really dislike about him is how he said nothing when he actually knew of Jack's affairs. Close friend or not, that's just terrible. He was an accomplice in that regard, in my opinion. Marianne was more likable than Caitlin. I really disliked Caitlin too. Michelle seriously deserved to be a dead character. That may sound harsh, but I really dislike girls like her and its ok to say such extreme things because she's only a book character. You don't mess around with married people. Overall though, the characters all have interesting points and none of them feel the same so there's definitely variety.
I seriously hate cheaters, period. I've never had that kind of thing happen to me, so don't jump to the conclusion that I despise infidelity because I've been cheated on. Definitely not. I just don't see a point in being with someone if you're going to cheat. It's despicable and a major waste of time for everyone involved. Save yourself the trouble and just breakup with the person if you could even think of cheating on them as a serious option. It'll be much easier on everyone. That being said, the whole plot of this book pretty much revolves around the fact that Jack is a dirty scumbag. This doesn't mean that the book isn't good though! It's definitely interesting and I wanted to keep reading to see what happened and ultimately I wanted to know who it was that did everyone a favor by getting rid of a villainous chick. Without this infidelity, there'd be no book.
I had fun reading it though. I did enjoy the problem-solving, critical-thinking, who-did-it? portion of the book. I was trying to put together the pieces and I'm happy to say that I was actually able to put it together before the book ended. Most would say that this point probably isn't good and the ending should be a twist, but its not TOTALLY obvious and it really just makes me feel like I paid good attention and was smart enough to put it together. I very much enjoyed following Jeremy during his investigations. That part was cool.
Yeah, its a pretty good book. It kept me reading on, which can't be said for all books. I did care about a couple of characters, not most of them, but a good enough few (particularly Sally and Jeremy). I would recommend this book, only to adults and other mature audiences (naturally). It's worth reading. Its not one of my favorite books, but it wasn't terrible by any means, even if I do greatly dislike the guy who I'm supposed to think is innocent. Its a good one time read.
Random Side Note
As I was reading this book, I couldn't help but think of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. For those who don't know, Phoenix Wright is a lawyer who is the main character of a video game for the Nintendo DS that I really enjoy playing. I have the first three, beat the first one, still working on the second and third (although to be honest, I'm just replaying through the first one again cause I just like it that much). It has nothing to do with this book really, except for the fact that Phoenix Wright also interiews people and tries to find the truth (and if we really get into it, then the exploration stuff that Jeremy does is similar to the evidence seeking that Wright does in the second and third games. The first game was mostly in-court scenes and interviews, not very much area exploration). I just kept thinking of it and felt the need to mention it in my final review.
Back on Track
The Reckless Engineer at the end of the day is a good thrill and crime mystery that I would recommend if you're looking for a good puzzle to solve. I give it 3 out of 5.
Thanks for joining me here at The Real World According To Sam, hope to see you again soon!
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