Title: The Lake House (Detective Chris Bailey #1)
Author: Kate Watterson
Published on: 10 February 2022
Genre: Mystery and Thrillers | Police Procedural
Andrew and his girlfriend are on a vacation at their friend Rob’s uncle’s cabin by the lake in Tennessee. Andrew fears the worst – his best-friend-for-life Rob has fallen in love with Lauren (Andrew’s girlfriend.) Lauren is aware of the attraction and there are times when she wonders if she’s with the wrong man. Rob’s girlfriend Karen was supposed to join them but cancels the trip at the last minute.
Rob and Drew hear a scream at night – they assume it is an animal or a bird. The next day, Lauren sees their neighbor lugging something heavy into the boat. The neighbor is a renowned author named Heaston. He sees Lauren watching him and drops by the same evening. The next day, Karen pays a visit and picks up a fight with Rob and leaves in anger. But she never reaches home… At the same time, Heaston’s wife is reported missing – and Heaston doesn’t seem to be bothered about it.
The Lake House is the first book in Kate Watterson’s Detective Chris Bailey series.
The story starts on an interesting note but falls flat soon after. Two friends and their girlfriends are to spend a quiet week fishing. But the tension between the two men is obvious. Seems like both of them have fallen in love with the same woman. When a renowned author’s wife is reported missing, Detective Chris and his partner Carter are assigned to the case.
Then, a body is found floating in the lake. The M.O. is same as one of the previous murders. The detectives wonder if this is the work of a serial killer. Meanwhile, Heaston (the author) is stalking Lauren. Things are getting uncomfortable for the group – Rob confesses he’s falling in love with Drew’s girlfriend. Lauren too wonders if Rob is the right partner for her…
The first half of the book seemed a little erotica-thriller-ish. Drew and Lauren cannot keep their hands off each other. Ugh! In the second half, the same ‘chemistry’ is shared between Lauren and Rob. I was under the impression this book was a standalone psychological thriller. Only when I saw it on Goodreads I learned this was a first in a police procedural series; the spotlight is on Drew, Rob and Lauren; Detective Bailey makes a guest appearance!
This did not feel like a police procedural at all! Also, I did not like the characters as much as I wanted to. Though the identity of the killer was obvious from the beginning, the events leading up to catching them red-handed kept me guessing till the end.
Overall, The Lake House by Kate Watterson was a good read. I am looking forward to seeing what’s next for Detective Bailey; hope to see him in a bigger role in the next book.
I received an ARC from Joffe Books in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.