A Thousand Steps

A Thousand Steps
A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker

Friday, January 10, 2020

FLASHBACK FRIDAY- The Cutaway by Christina Kovac- Feature and Review


The Newsroom meets Gone Girl.” —Cosmopolitan

The Cutaway draws you into the tangled world of corruption and cover-up as a young television producer investigates the disappearance of a beautiful Georgetown lawyer in this stunning psychological thriller, perfect for fans of Paula Hawkins and Gillian Flynn.

When brilliant TV news producer Virginia Knightly receives a disturbing “MISSING” notice on her desk related to the disappearance of a beautiful young attorney, she can’t seem to shake the image from her head. Despite skepticism from her colleagues, Knightly suspects this ambitious young lawyer may be at the heart of something far more sinister, especially since she was last seen leaving an upscale restaurant after a domestic dispute. Yet, as the only woman of power at her station, Knightly quickly finds herself investigating on her own.

Risking her career, her life, and perhaps even her own sanity, Knightly dives deep into the dark underbelly of Washington, DC business and politics in an investigation that will drag her mercilessly through the inextricable webs of corruption that bind the press, the police, and politics in our nation’s capital.

Harkening to dark thrillers such as Gone GirlLuckiest Girl Alive, and Big Little LiesThe Cutaway is a striking debut that will haunt you long after you reach the last page.



The CutawayThe Cutaway by Christina Kovac
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Cutaway by Christina Kovac is a 2017 Atria publication.

A solid debut!

This is another book that has been lingering around on my TBR pile for too long. In fact, it’s been hanging around so long the blurb was still comparing books to ‘Gone Girl’. Oy!

I think the newsroom premise is what prompted me to add this book to my list. Personally, investigative journalism is more interesting to me than standard police investigations. They tend to uncover the best scandals and conspiracies!!

In this case, an up and coming young attorney named Evelyn goes missing, catching the attention of TV producer, Virginia Knightly. Hoping that by calling attention to the case, the story might morph into positive ratings, and maybe help her exorcise a few personal demons, Virginia and her team open an investigation. But things take on a much stronger sense of urgency when Evelyn is found murdered.

Meanwhile, Virginia is fighting for her job, and those of her team, when a new station manager takes over, which makes solving this case more important than ever. However, the deeper she digs, the murkier the case becomes, and it looks as if key players may be attempting to cover up pertinent information and are purposely trying to stymie her progress. It soon becomes clear that Virginia can trust no one- and she could be putting herself directly in the line of fire.

For a debut novel, this book is pretty good. At first it was a bit dry and the pacing was anemic, but then several interesting twists upped the ante, and from there the story picked up steam.

There is a dark undertone to the story, and Washington is the perfect setting for this type of thriller. The newsroom atmosphere has a realistic quality to it, and the behind the scenes dramas were a nice touch. There were a few surprise developments on that end of things as well. I never could figure out who to trust, any more than Virginia could, and I don’t think I ever would have guessed how things would eventually turn out.

Overall, the premise and location, is what really sells this story. The author did a great job with construction, but the execution is a little wobbly. Other than that, I enjoyed the story, and I think the author is off to a good start. I hope she will try her hand at writing again someday.






Christina Kovac managed newsrooms and produced crime and political stories in the District. Her career as a television journalist began with Fox 5's Ten O'Clock News, followed by the ABC affiliate in Washington, D.C. For the last nine years, she worked at the Washington Bureau of NBC News. She lives with her family outside of Washington, D.C.

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