The Raven's Cry

A Wynter Island Mystery

Fiction - Mystery - General
296 Pages
Reviewed on 04/02/2023
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Rabia Tanveer for Readers' Favorite

The Raven’s Cry is the first installment in the Wynter Island Mystery series by Kim Herdman Shapiro. Journalist Kate Zoë Thomas leaves Afghanistan after avoiding a kidnapping attempt. However, she returns home to find her boyfriend, Daniel, cheating on her, which is more heartbreaking than the kidnapping attempt in a war-torn country. So Kate does what any woman would do; she packs her bags and moves to Wynter Island, where she starts her job as a station manager at a TV network. The job promises to be the boring distraction she needs, but things change quickly when she finds Daniel’s body at the beach. Unfortunately, Kate is the prime suspect, and the local police are not holding back. But Kate isn’t ready to back down just yet. As she investigates the murder, Kate realizes there are many secrets about Wynter Island that she knows nothing about. Will she uncover the mystery behind Daniel’s death in time?

It was not the whodunit story I expected; The Raven’s Cry was far better than my expectations. Wynter Island was a mystery, and I knew something was fishy about the place before Kate realized it. Kim Herdman Shapiro does a great job of creating a small-town environment. From Fish Bingo to gossip, Shapiro nails it all perfectly. I love how smart Kate is; she quickly picks up on things. She is observant, that’s for sure, and it works perfectly for her in the end. The mystery behind Daniel’s murder is electric. All my guesses as to what happened were wrong, and I had to wait until the end, where Shapiro explains everything. I loved Jupiter, the dog, and his connection with Kate. He was her only source of comfort, and their bond was terrific. The narrative style is fantastic and flowed gorgeously. The pace is perfect, and the scenes were descriptive enough to transport me right next to Kate as she solved the murder. Highly recommended!

Alma Boucher

The Raven’s Cry: A Wynter Island Mystery is a novel by Kim Herdman Shapiro. Kate is a journalist who spent a lot of time in Afghanistan. She caught her boyfriend cheating on her and wanted to start a new life. Gwen hired Kate to run the television station to promote Wynter Island, which depends on income from tourists to survive. Coming home from dinner, Kate went to the beach and saw a body floating in the water. Kate wanted to help, but when she turned the person around, she saw that it was her ex-boyfriend, Daniel. Kate was the prime suspect but was released because there was not enough evidence to arrest her. Kate's main goal was to clear her name and also find Daniel's killer.

The Raven’s Cry is set in a small town on an island. Kim Herdman Shapiro brought the community and the environment to life with detailed descriptions. The atmosphere was palpable and it was easy to become part of the small-town community. The story was full of action, and there was never a dull moment. The chapters flowed into each other and it was a pleasure to read. The characters were excellently developed with unique attributes and personalities. Each person contributed their part to making Wynter Island flourish. It was easy to fall in love with the role players, but there were a few I did not like. The mystery surrounding Daniel's death deepened as the story progressed, and more people became suspects. This story was well-written and exceeded my expectations by far.

Mimie Odigwe

In The Raven’s Cry: A Wynter Island Mystery by Kim Herdman Shapiro, Kate Zoë Thomas quits her job as a reporter in Afghanistan to start over as a station manager on Wynter Island's community channel. A few days after her arrival, on a moonlit walk down the beach, Kate discovers a body bobbing in the water. With the unfortunate discovery of the body and, as all fingers point to her, Kate must find the murderer and clear her name before the culprit stops her. But, on this small island where everyone knows everyone, there are no strangers; everyone is a suspect. Shapiro writes a traditional small-town mystery where your neighbor might just be a murderer.

The Raven’s Cry has a variety of characters. It is difficult to keep track of them all at first, but thanks to Shapiro's realistic writing, each character in Wynter Island has a distinct personality and role. Each also has evidence pointing to them as a suspect, making it difficult to pinpoint the murderer. Wynter Island is quite lovely, and the map at the beginning of the story makes it easier to understand the island's layout. I liked how the plot is driven by dialogue since gossip is an indelible feature of small towns. This, coupled with Fish Bingo, the weekly broadcast Kate hosts, makes it a realistic small-town mystery. Shapiro takes her time unraveling the mystery and eliminating suspects, making it a slow yet action-packed novel.