Sunday, March 14, 2021

✱✱Audio Book Review✱✱ The Midnight Call by Jode Millman

The Midnight Call
By: Jode Millman
Narrated by: Janel Valentine

Who would ever suspect that their mentor, teacher, and friend is a cold-blooded killer?

Attorney Jessie Martin didn't--at least not until she answers the midnight call.

Late one August night, Jessie's lifelong mentor and friend--and presently a popular, charismatic, and handsome high school teacher--Terrence Butterfield calls. He utters a startling admission: he's killed someone. He pleads for Jessie's help, so out of loyalty she rushes to his aid completely unaware that she's risking her relationship, her career, and her life--and that of her unborn child--to help Terrence.

Does Jessie's presence at Terrence's home implicate her in the gruesome murder of the teenage boy found in the basement? Why does Terrence betray Jessie when he has a chance to exonerate her of any charges? Has he been a monster in disguise for all these years?

To reclaim her life and prove her innocence, Jessie must untangle the web of lies and reveal the shocking truths behind the homicide. This quest turns out to be the fight of her life: to preserve everything and everyone she holds dear.

Momma Says: 2 stars⭐⭐

Jodé Millman’s Midnight Call had the potential to be a gripping legal thriller, and it certainly started out that way, but its grip loosened considerably chapter by chapter. Don’t get me wrong, there are aspects of a legal thriller in the book, but it’s few and far between a whole mess of domestic drama. There is a gruesome murder, and several of the scenes involving Terrence Butterfield are rather chilling, but many of those are cut short only to go right back to Jessie and an unsettling love triangle. And that brings me to Jessie. Most of the story revolves around her, and she is a lawyer, but she’s not THE lawyer on either side of this murder trial. Like the love triangle, she’s somewhere in the middle. And people on both sides of this thing either are in love with Jessie, or they have been in the past. She’s an okay character, but she seemed like more victim than anything else, which didn’t make her all that likable in my opinion. What I mean by that is she came across as a damsel in distress way too often. One minute, she would stand up for herself, and the next, she would fall into someone’s arms. I realize she was pregnant, and there were complications, but if Jessie was supposed to be a strong woman, she fell short.
The rest of the characters didn’t endear themselves to me any better than Jessie, unfortunately. I’m not sure if it was the author’s intention or not, but I didn’t like a single character in this book except for Jessie’s dad. He’s the only one who seemed to have his head on straight. The rest were too caught up in the wrong things or thinking about the grass being greener on the other side.
I did listen to the audiobook of this story, and for me, Janel Valentine was the saving grace of this book. She gives a very good performance, and that performance, along with an excellent audio quality, is what kept me listening to the end.
The more I listened to this book, the more I felt like it didn’t really know exactly what it wanted to be. It’s a little bit legal thriller and a lot domestic drama with a love triangle thrown in. Any of those things could have made for an interesting book, but in this case, it’s too convoluted, and it just didn’t work for me. So, what it all boiled down to is I didn’t care for the story, but I will be looking for this narrator in future audiobooks.

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