The Tao of the Viper

A Kate Pomeroy Mystery

Fiction - Supernatural
436 Pages
Reviewed on 08/28/2019
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite

The Tao of the Viper: A Kate Pomeroy Mystery by Linda Watkins is the second installment in the series, preceded by the award-winning first book, Storm Island. This book returns readers to Storm Island where Dr. Kate Pomeroy is attempting to get past the trauma from book one, with the loving Jeremy Bradshaw still by her side. Her manor house is now a medical practice that she launches as director and General Practitioner and all seems well...except for the nightmares. Meanwhile, a stranger, “The Old Man” Ian Morrison, returns to the island with his grandson Terry, fantasizing over revenge and an idea on how to get it. Vengeance is geared straight toward Kate, but the brunt of his initial despotic evilness is directed toward Terry's wife Mary, and the depths of his psychosis knows no bounds.

The Tao of the Viper is a fantastic and dark paranormal mystery, with Linda Watkins delivering enough suspense and chills to knock it into the thriller genre as well. Kate is a great protagonist, balancing general affability with dark and intrusive fallibility, and making her as complex as her extraordinary family history. There are violent fantasies that the antagonist describes in detail, as his point of view features alongside Kate's. The back and forth make for a terrifying combination, especially when The Old Man will stop at absolutely nothing to get what he's come for. This is an engrossing series for readers who enjoy mysteries with a supernatural twist, and those who are inevitably drawn in won't have to wait long for book three, Abducted.

Ankita Shukla

The Tao of the Viper: A Kate Pomeroy Mystery by Linda Watkins is a supernatural story. Legends say that witches used Storm Island as a hiding place in 1600 as they were being executed by the Puritan militia. Among these witches was a very powerful witch named Maude Prichard. The place that she built for her family had a silo. Apparently, this silo would only be visible to the direct descendant of this woman. Kate Pomeroy, who inherited the house after the deaths of her uncle, aunt, and father, is able to see the silo. Being a doctor, comprehending science comes easily to her and so she doesn't quite believe all the legends; however, that could soon change. Ian Morrison, a very old man, has something sinister about him. He moves to Storm Island for an important mission and chooses to live with his grandson, Terrance Morrison and Terrance's wife, Mary. From the moment Ian sets eyes on Kate, she feels a shiver down her spine and a sense of recognition. As for Ian Morrison, he believes this chance meeting with Kate is not a mere chance; he considers this meeting an omen. He chooses Kate's fiance, Jeremy, to be his next stepping stone.

The combination of real-world crime and supernatural mystery is absolutely delightful. The mystery of the old man had no straightforward solution. It appeared inevitable that Kate would lose Jeremy if she did not start believing in the myth of witches and the viper. The author has presented the tug of war between Kate's logical brain and the resemblance of the legends of the viper with the old man to perfection. As a reader, I was glued to my kindle to discover what was the deal with the old man. He was the meanest old man that I have ever come across in any book. Mary Morrison is one of the side characters whom I really liked. She loved her husband, but she was aware of her conscience. All her efforts to get her husband on the right path were going awry, but she was not giving up. The Tao of the Viper has the power to hold its readers until the last page. The mystery, both supernatural and Vlad's revenge plan, is very well executed. The intrigue never ends and the plot moves at a steady pace. I would recommend this book to supernatural mystery lovers. The story will keep readers on their toes until the end.

Rabia Tanveer

The Tao of the Viper: A Kate Pomeroy Mystery by Linda Watkins is the story of Dr. Kate Pomeroy as she tries to settle down on Storm Island. After a very testing summer, Kate thinks that she is finally getting the hang of life on the island. She is trying to find a rhythm that actually works for her, but fate has other plans in store. A man from her past is here on the island; he has some old scores to settle and she is not sure what she should do about this. To make matters worse, there is an old man on Storm Island who is ready to do whatever it takes to exact revenge for things that happened decades ago. However, she has no idea which of these two pose the biggest threat and she has no idea how she can stop them. The only question is: can she protect herself and the people she loves from these strange men?

This novel sent chills down my spine from the moment I started reading. From the opening lines to the final paragraph, Linda Watkins gave readers something very special. Although I didn’t read the first novel in the series, I had zero issues connecting with Kate, understanding her and sympathizing with her. She is the perfect heroine for this story; she is smart, intelligent and very courageous. I think Kate adds another dark and intriguing layer to the story with her background and her current situation. She is complex, she has layers and it was exciting having every layer peeled and being given a look inside her character. I enjoyed how the author kept a clean balance between the supernatural and the real world in the novel. Both of these themes have plenty of page space so that the reader can explore and enjoy both aspects individually and together. She mixed them together and gave a very entertaining, action-packed and enjoyable concoction that had me hooked!