Sketchy Characters

Fiction - Mystery - Murder
366 Pages
Reviewed on 01/20/2022
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Author Biography

Sheila McGraw's followup to her mystery novel, The Knife Thrower's Wife, is the twisty, un-put-downable, page-turning, suspense thriller, Sketchy Characters. McGraw is well known for her children's and how-to craft books, and her mystery novels demonstrate her ability to trade the kid-lit sandbox for the grown-ups' steamy hot tub, confirming that for McGraw, no genre is off-limits. McGraw started her career as an illustrator and writer for fashion houses and magazines. She transitioned to publishing when she was tapped to illustrate the children's classic, Love You Forever, which has gone on to sell more than 30 million copies. McGraw followed with 15 books, including several bestsellers. In 2006, McGraw permanently swapped Canadian snow for Texas sunshine. She resides in a waterfront community in Galveston County, where, if she isn't at her keyboard or easel, she can be found gardening or relaxing by the water. She is the mother of three grown sons.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Foluso Falaye for Readers' Favorite

Sheila McGraw's Sketchy Characters is a page-turner about a character who has to question the sincerity of everyone around her as she strives desperately to escape the schemes of a serial killer. Jobless, broke, and homeless, Marilyn finds new opportunities to advance her life beyond her wildest dreams, albeit at a great cost. The first unusual development that steers Marilyn toward a new reality is a hurricane that renders her homeless. Following this is a series of events that throw Marilyn into a whirlwind of confusion and suspicion: serial killings, dangerous scam schemes, arrests, flings with men on both sides of the law, and a literal fight for survival. Marilyn finds it hard to trust anyone as she discovers shocking secrets about the people in her life.

I wasn't expecting this! The excitement of running a perilous scheme involving millions of dollars. The fear while fighting off a serial killer. The tingling, sensual feeling of exchanging sparks with new romantic partners. Sketchy Characters spins from one surprising event to another, shattering my expectations and leaving me eager to discover the eventual outcomes. Marilyn is portrayed in a desperate situation that reflects our profit-driven world and its tendency to force people to make immoral decisions to survive. The themes explored in the book include court battles, naked modeling, catfishing, the press, loss, serial killing, drug dealing, deceit, and more. I could not drop the book for a second. The adroit balance of different elements, like an intricate description of the world, clever and perceptive observations, realistic conversations, and an intricate, well-planned plot results in a masterpiece that deserves to be awarded and celebrated. I have developed a taste for Sheila McGraw's writing, and I want more!