A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews- Feature and Review


Pull up a lounge chair and have a cocktail at Sunset Beach – it comes with a twist. 

Drue Campbell’s life is adrift. Out of a job and down on her luck, life doesn’t seem to be getting any better when her estranged father, Brice Campbell, a flamboyant personal injury attorney, shows up at her mother’s funeral after a twenty-year absence. Worse, he’s remarried – to Drue’s eighth grade frenemy, Wendy, now his office manager. And they’re offering her a job.

It seems like the job from hell, but the offer is sweetened by the news of her inheritance – her grandparents’ beach bungalow in the sleepy town of Sunset Beach, a charming but storm-damaged eyesore now surrounded by waterfront McMansions.

With no other prospects, Drue begrudgingly joins the firm, spending her days screening out the grifters whose phone calls flood the law office. Working with Wendy is no picnic either. But when a suspicious death at an exclusive beach resort nearby exposes possible corruption at her father’s firm, she goes from unwilling cubicle rat to unwitting investigator, and is drawn into a case that may – or may not – involve her father. With an office romance building, a decades-old missing persons case re-opened, and a cottage in rehab, one thing is for sure at Sunset Beach: there’s a storm on the horizon.

Sunset Beach is a compelling ride, full of Mary Kay Andrews' signature wit, heart, and charm.



Sunset BeachSunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews is a 2019 St. Martin’s Press publication.

A perfect beach read mystery!

Drue, now in her mid-thirties, finds herself at loose ends, heading in no clear direction. Her mother recently passed away, and an injury ended her competitive days as a kite boarder. Adding insult to injury, she gets fired from her job. As a last resort, she reluctantly accepts a job offer from her estranged father, who is a personal injury lawyer.

So, she moves to Sunset Beach and into the cottage she just inherited from her mother. Upon arrival, she is stunned to learn her father has remarried for a third time. Not only that, wife number three used to be Drue’s BF. Awkward!

But at least she has a job and a place to stay, right? Unfortunately, her new stepmother and former friend is also her office manager, and for some reason she has it in for Drue. She’s also struggling with her new position, and the cottage is in horrible disrepair.

However, when a disgruntled client barges into the law office, furious with the firm for dropping the ball on a wrongful death suit, Drue senses something is off about the situation and begins investigating in her spare time.

If that weren’t enough to keep her occupied, she discovers a cache of old newspaper clippings detailing the disappearance of a local woman back in the mid-seventies. Why did her mother keep those newspaper clippings? Could her father have been involved in the case somehow? The more questions Drue asks, the murkier the two cases become. But, once she peels back enough layers, she may wish she had left the dead buried.

I realized with a shock that it is already August and I have yet to indulge in an official summer ‘beach read’. I chose this book specifically because it had a ‘beachy’ cover and title, and while we may all have our own definition of ‘beach reads’, I think this book would be perfect to take along on your vacation, or for a day at the beach.

Granted, this is more of a mystery- or in this case, two mysteries, instead of a drama, or romance, although both of those elements are included, as well.

My only small gripe is that I never understood why Drue’s old friend was so heavy handed and mean, but I suppose all’s well that ends well. The family makes progress, though, and Drue deserved a little overdue attention from her father. The story is quite absorbing, but not too heavy and the ending is a real stunner!!

This is my second book by MKA and once again, I see why this author is so popular. I love the amateur sleuth element, and the cold case story. Drue is funny, sarcastic, determined, and a very believable character. I instantly took a liking to her.

I enjoyed seeing her carve out a niche for herself and discover a hidden talent she can build a career on. I’d like to touch base with Drue again and see how her detective skills are developing and touch base with her family and friends, as well.

Overall, a very satisfying read! I am definitely reading more books by Mary Kay Andrews!!






Mary Kay Andrews is the pen name of American writer Kathy Hogan Trocheck, based in Atlanta, who has authored a number of best-selling books under the Andrews pen name since 2002.

Trochek graduated from the University of Georgia with a journalism degree in 1976. She worked as a reporter at a number of papers, and spent 11 years as a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution before leaving to write fiction full-time in 1991. She published ten mystery novels under her own name between 1992 and 2000, and switched to the Andrews pen name in 2002 to author Savannah Blues, which marked a change in her style to more Southern-flavored themes.

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