I am a paperback girl, so the first thing I notice about any book is the cover. Guilty by Association is a novel I am proud to display in my personal library. The use of blacks, greys and whites, with just the right touch of red mixed in, makes for a spectacular appearance. The online version, in my opinion, doesn't do it justice.
I always find myself flipping through the pages of a new book, before reading it, hoping the formatting is in order, as well as the font sizing and spacing. I appreciate a book that is easy on my ageing eyes. Smaller print can mean breaking out the reading glass, which isn't quite as comfortable and takes me twice as long to finish. Everything about E.A. Copen's book screams read me and it didn't take long for me to give in.
The book is an urban fantasy set in Texas. Rather than a rehashing of the old 'supernatural beings are superior' plot, this story takes a different approach with an unusual, but refreshing twist. The vampires, werewolves, fae and other non-human beings are the ones being ostracized from society and contained to reservations. They are tracked, tested on and restricted in unimaginable ways by the government. I should warn there are strong themes of prejudice woven into the plot, that could borderline being a trigger for some people. The action begins inside one of these reservations.
The main character is a female investigator named Judah, who drives a beat up, 1968 Firebird and works for the government. On her first day, she walks right into a murder scene, that sets up a 'who done it' plot that will keep you guessing all the way through the chapters. As the book progresses we learn she is so much more than just another cliche woman agent. Not only is she a mother, but she has secrets – secrets that are revealed slowly throughout the story.
This action packed novel started on page one and kept me entertained all the way through. The characters are well written and believable, in a supernatural sort of way. I give E.A. Copen 4.6 stars out of 5. I suppose that rounds up to five. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys mystery, intrigue and suspense with a tidal-wave of supernatural thrown in.
You can find Guilty by Association on Amazon.