Mr. Kiss and Tell is the second novel in the Veronica Mars spin off books by Rob Thomas and Jennifer Graham. The plot centers around the brutal attack of Grace Manning, a character from season 2 of the TV show. The Neptune Grand, the hotel the girl was attacked in, hired Veronica to investigate the girl’s claims and decide what the culpability of the hotel was after Manning accused one of the staff of being her attacker. Veronica takes the case and is soon surrounded by misleading evidence and non-existent leads. The writing is thick with the dark, sardonic humor from the TV show and is intensely fun to read.
I found it difficult to stay objective while reading this book because I’m already a fan. I’m that ideal audience the book is seeking. The person who wants to know what happened to these characters after the show went off the air. I loved that the series brought in characters that had such a short shelf life on the show and expanded upon them. For me, this aspect has been the best part of the book series. Because the show ended so abruptly many plot elements were left dangling and the books have given the creators another outlet to tie up those loose ends. All of the characters have evolved from their time on the show and yet remain somewhat the same, still driven by the same desires and needs that fueled them throughout the series.
The actual case is solved very early on in the novel with the remainder of the book trying to figure out a way to catch the criminal. It does drag in places but the characters make up for the lack of a tight plot. Not too many twists and turns but serviceable as a mystery. I love that Veronica is still the same mix of idealism and spunk. She’s still a bit jaded but never strays from the fight. She’s like a tiny Phillip Marlowe in the present day world. And that’s really the reason fans are reading these novels is the powder keg character Veronica Mars, to see where she ends up and what changes are coming her way.
Overall, this was a fun read, especially for those who loved the TV series. It would be fascinating to hear from people who have never seen the show and read the books from a fresh perspective. There would be the real test.
Happy reading and stay tuned for the next read in Book Battle 2015!