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Charlie McNally was still basking in the after glow of last seasons big award win. Now she must come up with another winning story in order to keep her job.
At forty-six-years-old, she continually fights the age battle and how it may affect her role as an investigative reporter on the local television station. After all, there are a number of young men and women who would love to take her place.
Still in the hospital after plastic surgery, Charlie’s mother is playing on Charlie’s fear of aging by trying to get her daughter to have her own face work done. Charlie is also working on her relationship with Josh and his young daughter, Penny.
Finally, the story of a lifetime falls into the collective laps of Charlie and her best friend and producer, Franklin. She has been bugging the Constitutional Justice Project to let her follow one of their wrongful conviction cases. Into her life enters Dorinda Sweeney who is in prison for allegedly killing her husband three years ago.
Now the Project has received new evidence proving that Dorinda may not have killed the abusive drunk, and they want Charlie to help them with the investigation. Unfortunately Dorinda confessed to the murder and remains steadfast that she is guilty.
If Charlie takes on the investigation, she is going head-to-head with the office of Attorney General, and gubernatorial hopeful, Oscar Ortega who has an agenda of his own.
The closer Charlie gets to the truth, the more she finds that a cover-up is keeping Dorinda from freedom. As the bodies begin to pile up, suddenly Charlie’s own life appears to be in danger.
Face Time is the second in the Charlotte McNally series by Hank Phillippi Ryan. Most of the main players are included in this novel, although Charlie does have a new supervisor. She and Franklin are still joined at the hip and ready to take on anyone who stands in their way of a good news story.
Ryan’s own years of investigative reporting gives her an inside edge with the detail that helps move the fast-paced story along. This time around Charlie spends much more time with her mother, proving Ryan understands the angst between a pushy mother and a daughter with esteem issues.
The main characters are well developed, and the antagonists are understandable. Ryan uses her personal experience and her creative mind as she creates a solid mystery. There are the usual twists and turns that keep the reader guessing as to the truth until the surprising reveal. Then, another surprise adds to a satisfying finish.
Face Time is a worthy follow-up to Prime Time. Next up is Air Time and the continuing saga of one of our favorite heroes.
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