Book Review: Gretchen Archer’s Double Dip

September 3, 2014 4 out of 5, review 0 ★★★★

Book Review: Gretchen Archer’s Double DipTitle: Double Dip
Author: Gretchen Archer
Genre: Mystery
My Rating: four-stars
My Copy: ARC courtesy of Henery Press
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: It's Davis Way's first slot-tournament season. And it may be her last.

Things are dicey at work. A personal assistant goes missing, a little old lady goes on a suspicious winning streak, and a Bellissimo executive goes gaga for Davis. She follows a disappearing slot-tournament player trail to the So Help Me God Pentecostal Church in Beehive, Alabama, then jumps headlong into a high stakes holy scandal.

She's on a losing streak at home, too. Her days, nights, and dinners run together, as Davis juggles a revolving door of uninvited guests, namely her rotten ex-ex-husband, Eddie Crawford. And Bradley Cole thinks three's a crowd.

The worst? Davis doesn't feel so hot. Maybe it's the banana pudding, or maybe it's a little bundle of something else.

When in doubt, blame David…er Davis. Davis Way is back and this time in Double Dip she might be in over her head. If you haven’t read the first book, Double Whammy, it’s not necessary to do so in order to enjoy Double Dip. Gretchen Archer does a good job describing past events and gives a clear picture as to who’s who in terms of reoccurring characters.

We have good character development and this important because it’s the second book in the series. Archer continues to develop her characters and we get to know them better. I’d like to say there’s more to Davis Way, but no she’s still the same. I love getting in her head with regards to nicknames and her reasoning for giving them. It just cracks me up! I’m more than happy to report that we get to know the mysterious Bradley Cole a little better and yes, he’s still super awesome! Seriously Archer, where can I get my own Bradley? We have several secondary characters that a play a vital role including Davis’ ex-husband, Eddie to his own grandmother. Though, the real scene stealer is the Bellissimo’s Master of Ceremonies, Matthew Thatcher. He just oozes charisma and you can easily imagine his legion of fans.

Narrative is first person via Davis and if I thought she was a bit unreliable as a narrator in Double Whammy, I can honestly say, she’s a bit more balanced in Double Dip. The fact we aren’t given a back story to Davis’ life like we had in Whammy, really helps. While I liked the back story scenes in Whammy, they did take a bit away from Davis and really getting to know her. She’s still quirky and a bit out there, but she’s just so much fun! I can count on Davis and her antics to put on a smile on my face. Overall, Archer gives us a more a polished story in terms of knowing what to focus on and what’s important, something I felt that was slightly lacking in Whammy.

As for the overall mystery, it was exhausting trying to figure it out. I really liked the double mystery and I feel as if I’m giving spoilers by saying there’s two cases to be solved. I won’t go into much detail, but Archer threw me off with regards to Bradley’s case. While I liked Davis’ involvement in Bradley’s case, I have to admit that her involvement felt a bit forced. It was almost as if Archer had to have her involved in his life somehow to make their relationship relevant. Despite this slight hiccup, I really did like how Archer brings it all together. In the end, it all will make sense!

Despite enjoying Double Dip, I do have some complaints. The first is on the use of Davis’ ex-husband Eddie. I won’t go into detail because a large part of his presence is connected to the plot and I don’t want to spoil things, but having Eddie show up threw me for a loop. In Double Whammy, Davis spent way too much time talking about him and I wished we had seen more of him. In hindsight, despite Davis wanting to move on, perhaps she isn’t quite over Eddie as we are led to believe? I was annoyed with Eddie’s appearance and even more so when Davis’ family doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with it. When we see Bradley’s reaction, I was devastated for Davis, but at the same time, I wanted to shake some sense into her and just leave Eddie on his own. The second complaint I have is regarding the timeline from when Double Dip takes place. I’m use to books in a series taking place shortly after one book ends or at least being notified of a time change and at no point does Archer inform us of the time change until she makes a slight note. It threw me off a few times especially since I expected to pick up right where left off in Whammy.

Overall, Gretchen Archer’s Double Dip is a light fun book. It does end on a slight cliffhanger, but not one that will have you throwing the book across the room. I personally can’t wait to see what’s in store for Davis in book three, Double Strike.

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