The Jillian Factor

Fiction - Suspense
376 Pages
Reviewed on 04/29/2018
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite

The Jillian Factor by B.A. Mealer is a suspenseful novel about a twenty-four-year-old detective on a case that quickly becomes personal. When Jillian Potter stumbles on the corpse of the very person she is investigating in a case, she knows it can’t be anything but a bad omen. As she works diligently with undercover investigator Thomas Wellington to discover the culprit, things quickly get out of control as her past catches up with her. To be able to save her career, she must honestly face a painful past.

In an investigative novel like this, there is always the probability that anyone could be the devil behind the crime, and many characters become suspects. I love the way B.A. Mealer handles the balance — with a deft hand — and creates the next plot twist or red herring for fans of the genre. The elements of romance are skillfully integrated into the narrative and they are a great addition to the overall entertainment experience for readers. The writing is polished and the prose is delightful, with vivid descriptions and engaging dialogues. The author’s handling of character development is also deft and masterly, and the author uses the conflict to unveil deeper layers of characterization. The protagonist may seem too young for a sleuth, but I enjoyed the depth of her maturity, one of those characters who are forced to grow up by circumstances. The Jillian Factor is an engaging and highly entertaining novel, well-crafted to keep the reader turning the pages.

Ruffina Oserio

The Jillian Factor by B.A. Mealer is a suspenseful and gripping novel that will appeal to fans of sleuth stories and gritty investigations. Twenty-four-year-old private investigator, Jillian Potter, has just discovered the body of the man she is investigating in her current case. But this is only the beginning of trouble for her as she teams up with Thomas Wellington, an undercover agent, to find answers. As the investigation falls apart, Jillian begins to understand that this could be very personal and that her career might be at risk if she doesn’t reconcile with a past she ignores.

B.A. Mealer has crafted a very powerful story with a beautiful setting and great characters. The theme of family, murder, and crime are well-written into the narrative and, from the beginning of the story, the reader is introduced to the dynamics of Jill’s family, a not so peaceful place to be, which already alerts the reader that they will be dealing with complex characters. The writing is wonderful and the author has a unique gift of projecting the emotions and feelings of the characters on the setting. Vivid descriptions make the reader feel as though they were sitting side by side with the characters: “The reflection of the rising moon shimmering on the surface of the water was beautiful and calming. A gentle breeze set the leaves to rustling, adding to the rhythmic soft lapping of the water against the shore.” The Jillian Factor is a gritty story with characters that readers will root for. The author knows how to take readers by surprise, and in places they least expect.