Book Review: All In by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

24849026All In (The Naturals #3) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Summary from Goodreads:

Three casinos. Three bodies. Three days.

After a string of brutal murders in Las Vegas, Cassie Hobbes and the Naturals are called in to investigate. But even with the team’s unique profiling talents, these murders seem baffling: unlike many serial killers, this one uses different methods every time. All of the victims were killed in public, yet the killer does not show up on any tape. And each victim has a string of numbers tattooed on their wrist. Hidden in the numbers is a code—and the closer the Naturals come to unraveling the mystery, the more perilous the case becomes.

Meanwhile, Cassie is dealing with an equally dangerous and much more painful mystery. For the first time in years, there’s been a break in her mother’s case. As personal issues and tensions between the team mount, Cassie and the Naturals will be faced with impossible odds—and impossible choices.

My Thoughts:

Rating: 4.5 stars

I have to admit that Ms. Barnes really went all out with this one. When it comes to series, you can expect them to be little less in worth than the first few, however this was not the case for The Naturals. The murders, mystery and plot unfolded perfectly, making it hard for me to stop reading. For me, All In is definitely the best book from the series and I do hope that the fourth will outshine this one. I have a high expectation that it will.

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THE STORY
I really enjoyed the story in terms of the mystery behind the murders and who-dun-it. The naturals are really faced with a challenge and it was nice to see all five of them working together and putting their issues aside to get what needs to get done. There are a lot of hints and clues that are gradually released as the story proceeds that might play a huge role in the next book. Ah, and finally we learn more about Cassie’s mother and a few other main characters. The revelations gave me chills.
I don’t want to say too much in case I spoil the good stuff. It’s hard to find investigations and murders, special people with special skills without them having supernatural powers and being the chosen one in young adult books(sshh, I might have not looked far enough).

THE CHARACTERS

“Home is the people who love you most.”

It’s so refreshing to see characters grow, become stronger, show compassion and be supportive to one another and that’s exactly what Cassie, Dean, Lia, Sloane and Michael are for one another. When they were faced with crisis after the other and it seemed like they were going to break, the others snapped them out of it. They’ve got all the family vibes. What I also liked about them is that they never give up. They keep pushing, they keep digging until they find an answer. Luckily, they have Judd as the solid, adult figure to keep them from getting themselves hurt or worse, which is another great thing about the novel.

“No matter who you are, or where you go, no matter how well-protected you are, we’ll find you.”

THE ROMANCE
For what little romance there is in the book, it’s really done well. Dean and Cassie really are in sync with one another. They know when to give in and when to let go. They’re there for each other through the nightmares and the insane situations.

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Overall, it was a really great book and I look forward to see what Ms. Barnes has in store for us in the next book. I do hope that it will exceed my expectations. The only thing that I would have liked from the writing is for some descriptions of the surroundings. I felt like that was one of the things(or only thing really) that was lacking. Although, it was written exceptionally well with each chapter making me excited to read on and find out more.

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