Started and finished this book in a day because I was extremely eager to see how it turned out (and by the way, I did not manage to guess who the real killer was).
Shallow End starts with the death of Devon, a teenage boy. What makes Devon "special" is that a few years ago, he was involved in a case where his teacher was accused of sexually assaulting him. That teacher, Jane, got out of prison a month ago, so she's obviously the top suspect. But can Jane, who seems to want nothing more than to see her children, be the killer?
First things first. After I downloaded the book, I noticed that this was labeled as Stonechild and Rouleau Mystery #4. Kala Stonechild is one of the detectives in the book and Rouleau is her superior. To be honest, I didn't really feel Rouleau's presence in the book, and I felt that Kala was the more active character here. That being said, I had no problems reading this book as a standalone - there are probably a few things I missed, but the team dynamic was easy enough for a first-time reader to grasp.
What stood out to me was the sheer number of unlikeable characters in the book. Jane's ex-husband, Adam is unpleasant, as is his new girlfriend. I didn't like the parents of the dead boy. I didn't like Woodson, a cop that hates Jane and I didn't like the reporter either (and I seem to have forgotten her name). Luckily, I did like Jane and Kala, who were the main characters, as well as Gunderson's, Kala's partner at work.
The mystery was pretty well-done, but the characters were what stood out more. I didn't manage to guess the killer either, and I thought the twist at the end was pretty good too.
When I have the time, I'll probably go back and read the first few books in the series.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review.