The Key by Jennifer Sturman

715858This is the next installment in the Rachel Benjamin mystery series and this one ramps up the action by having Rachel be suspected of the murder this time.

Rachel’s new boss is a jackass with a capital ASS and she spends most of the first few chapters wishing him dead out loud. I don’t think there’s anyone who hasn’t jokingly wished someone dead, but Rachel (and her co-workers, dreamy Jake and plain Mark) just go WAY WAY over the top with the references. Even if the back cover didn’t explicitly mention that Rachel’s going to be prime suspect #1, it’s just SO anvil-y that I actually said “oh COME ON!” out loud while reading.

Rachel on the lam is mildly amusing, though her complete ignorance that a) State College, PA is a place that exists and b) it’s the home to Penn State University is a little ridiculous. I mean, I know New Yorkers are notoriously self-centered about geography, but I was pretty sure that Rachel wasn’t even a born and bred New Yorker, so there’s really no excuse.

There’s also some annoying relationship drama (Rachel has one fight with Dreamy Fiance Peter and decides that she should just let him find someone else. Eye roll.), but of course, it all works out fine in the end. I do hope Rachel starts to appreciate all Dream Fiance Peter did for her in this book when I get to the next book, but I’m not holding my breath.