Review: The Big Fix by Linda Grimes (In a Fix #3)


The Big Fix by Linda Grimes // VBC ReviewThe Big Fix (In a Fix/Ciel Halligan #3)
Linda Grimes
Published: May 12, 2015 (Tor)
Purchase: Book Depository or Amazon
Review source: copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review

Reviewed by: Jo

Rating (out of 5): 3.5 stars

Note: While this review will be spoiler free, it may make reference to previous books. If you haven’t started this series yet, check out VBC’s review of book 1, In a Fix.

Well, life is certainly never dull when you’re Ciel Halligan; aura adaptor, problem fixer to the stars…. possible accessory to murder?!

That’s right, our favorite human chameleon is back and has gotten herself into a pretty sticky situation in this third novel. The Big Fix opens with Ciel filling in for one of Hollywood’s hottest stars, Jackson Gunn, who also happens to be petrified of snakes. Not wanting to ruin his tough guy image on the set of his latest film (that features, you guessed it, snakes) he hires Ciel. While filling in as Jackson, she receives the news that his wife, Angelica, has been murdered. It looks like Angelica’s estranged sister Lily-Ann may be the culprit until Ciel finds out that Jackson went missing from her client safe-house for a few hours—not good. With the help of her boyfriend Billy, Ciel sets out to find if her services have just provided the perfect alibi.

This is possibly my favorite storyline so far in this series. Even as Jackson’s actions become increasingly erratic and Ciel uncovers more and more examples of his less than gentlemanly transgressions, I still couldn’t figure out if he was guilty or not. Just when I thought I had things figured out, boom, a new suspect would emerge. The whole adaptor angle adds such a fresh dimension to a murder mystery, both the possibilities and the obstacles felt endless. It’s also fun to play around in the Hollywood world, setting the stage for some A-list auras being ‘borrowed’!

Humor is once again at the forefront with Ciel’s family bringing plenty to the table. Her brother Thomas is getting married and Ciel has been drafted in as Maid of Honor. While the murder mystery burns away in the background for the first half of the book, we’re treated to bridesmaid dress hell, planning-mad moms and Ciel being traumatized by her parents (Buffy, Spike and TMI). I laughed a lot while reading, particularly at Ciel’s inner dialogue, and the family dynamics continue to be a joy to read.

Unfortunately the wedding (which is very sweet) sets the stage for some mega relationship drama and this is were The Big Fix lost me a bit. There has always been a question mark with Ciel as far as Mark, Thomas’ best friend, and if she really has put her crush to bed. When she began her relationship with Billy in the previous book I was hoping that question had be answered. (Also because I love Billy, he’s so wonderfully cheeky.) Turns out, not so much. I wasn’t a fan of her wavering here, still ‘melting’ around Mark. Huge conflicts arise and I thought they were done really well; messy, shocking and heartbreaking but finally bringing a conclusion… Until the last chapter where it was all undone. I’m all for going through the pain with characters but I want it to be for a reason.

All in all I had a blast reading The Big Fix. This was another hijinks-fueled installment in this unique urban fantasy series, with bags of humor and mythology that constantly kept me guessing. I’m not totally sold on the direction of the romantic element but this definitely won’t stop me picking up the next book, All Fixed up, when it hits shelves later this month—this world is too much fun!

Sexual content: graphic sex

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