Wednesday, May 25, 2022

A Familiar Sight by Brianna Labuskes

First Line: The lace curtain created patterns of splattered light on the back of Reed Ken'ts hand as he held the wispy fabric away from the window, just far enough so that he had a clear view of the Porsche pulling to the curb.
Psychologist and criminologist Dr. Gretchen White is Boston homicide detective Patrick Shaughnessy's go-to person for help in solving important cases, but that doesn't mean he's forgotten about her past. Accused of murdering her aunt when just a child, White is a self-professed non-violent sociopath-- and Shaughnessy still thinks she got away with murder.
When teenager Viola Kent is accused of killing her mother, the case seems open and shut. The public has already tried and convicted the girl. But Dr. Gretchen White isn't so sure because she sees something in Viola that no one else can: herself. And if Viola is indeed a scapegoat, then who really did it? This is something White is determined to find out, regardless whose toes she has to step on.


None of the characters in Labuskes' A Familiar Sight really reached out and grabbed me. It was the puzzle of the plot that kept me hooked. Filthy rich Dr. Gretchen White who refuses to lock the doors of her Porsche and loves toying with people always remained a bit gimmicky to me instead of feeling human. Marconi, the sergeant assigned to follow White around, was the only character that piqued my interest.  She had the smarts to adapt to White's idiosyncrasies, and both White and I appreciated her skills.

A lot of your reactions to this book will hinge on how you feel about Gretchen White. May you get along with her better than I did. Even though the story is compelling, the characters aren't calling me back for more.
A Familiar Sight by Brianna Labuskes
eISBN: 9781542027342
Thomas & Mercer © 2021
eBook, 369 pages
Psychological Suspense, #1 Dr. Gretchen White
Rating: B-
Source: Purchased from Amazon.


  1. I think this just goes to show how important it is to care about the characters, Cathy. Even if the story itself is interesting, if the characters don't appeal, or aren't interesting, it's just not going to happen. I think I'm going to hold off on this one...

    1. Good idea, Margot. I tend to be a character-driven reader, so if there's not at least one of them I can hang my hat on-- even if that character only fills me with intense dislike-- the book usually falls flat.

  2. I need to read one of Labuskes' books just to see if I like her. Have you read and liked any of her other books?

    1. No, I haven't, Lark. I read this one on the recommendation of a fellow blogger. Characters like Gretchen White used to be a novelty and, as a result, interesting. Now I'm over them and tend to find them tiresome.

  3. Oh. To read or not to read is the question that Shakespeare was really
    asking. Don't know what to do. Probably will skip it.


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