Book review: Solving Cadence Moore

Solving Cadence MooreSolving Cadence Moore
by Gregory Sterner
Aperture Press
370 pages


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For once, I’m going to start my review with the official synopsis of the book Solving Cadence Moore:

How much will one man risk to solve the unsolvable?

Ten years ago, famous young singer Cadence Moore disappeared without a trace on a remote highway in western Pennsylvania. To this day her fate remains unknown. Was she kidnapped or murdered? Or did she simply run away in search of a new life, leaving behind the abuse and heartbreak that haunted her?

Charlie Marx, host of the popular conspiracy radio show “Underground Broadcast,” is obsessed with Cadence. Desperate to find her after deceiving his boss to save his job, he launches an investigation of his own, digging deep into the missing woman’s past and uncovering her darkest secrets. Working feverishly for weeks, he claims to have solved the mystery and promises to reveal Cadence’s fate at the end of a groundbreaking podcast series and live radio special.

But is it all a lie? As years of twisted details slowly unravel, Charlie races to solve the biggest mystery of the decade. If he succeeds, it will mean closure for Cadence. If he fails, his entire world will come crashing down live on air–and the truth may be lost forever.

Isn’t that tempting? I think we should start recognizing the art of synopsis writing, and name the talented writer behind this one and others. A cold case, a radio show investigating, promising to solve the mystery of the century, and risking his whole career in it? This sounded really good, and I accepted to receive the book and review it.

I’m not going to keep you hanging to the very last paragraph of my review, that would be too much like the book itself. I’m just going to be blunt about it: I totally wasted my time. The only reason I kept reading to the very end is that I usually commit to read and review a book I requested.

Were there some positive elements?
I guess yes, some of the suspense was good, and you really have to wait to the very end to know if Cadence Moore’s case is solved or not.

But the book could do with some serious editing. (I may be wrong, but it even seems to me that a character changed first name on page 116, from Jared to John – NB: my copy was not an ARC). It was too long and often repetitive and boring, for a thriller.
The writing itself was less than spectacular. The style often disgusted me. Honestly, if you take out all the f* words and similar expressions, you could already have many less pages!
When will authors realize that profanity is simply boring, especially when these words are so numerous? Please take time to develop your vocabulary and creativity.

As I was reading the book, I wrote down this, which summarizes well my opinion: painful f* loaded dialogs with drunk and manipulative characters.

Another positive element could be that the book is a great illustration of our shallow entertainment society. But I doubt that’s the real message of the book, otherwise the book would have ended differently, wouldn’t it?
So Charlie, a radio show host, is launching into this massive project of a series of podcasts on a cold case, the disappearance of the young Cadence Moore ten years before. Thanks to a possible lead he got from his cousin in jail.
Most of the book consists in transcription of the podcasts. 

But really, many passages in the book tend to highlight that Charlie’s interest is not in Cadence per se, nor in justice to be made, but rather in making a super splashy revelation that will bring him success in his career, and money. And to do that, he heavily has recourse to major manipulation and lies. And in their turn, several manipulated characters rely on this same dealing with others.
These multiple layers of manipulation and lies are too close to our post-truth society to be enjoyable. I saw it as a sad mirror of how justice is currently dealt with in the US. Some seem to be gambling with truth. They lie constantly, and think things can be made right just simply by saying, I’m sorry. When they even apologize.
Add delusion and inflated egos, in other words, obnoxious characters. And of course, totally dysfunctional families. Besides, all the details on college night life were totally uninteresting to me. 

In other words, the best part of the book is clearly the synopsis.

VERDICT: Not worth your time


NB: so you may wonder, why 2 Eiffel towers? It’s just that 1 Eiffel tower means I didn’t even finish the book. See my rating chart. Posted at the very bottom of the site.

Any recent bad experience you had with a book you had to finish?

In full compliance with FTC Guidelines, I received this book free of charge from the author. I was in no way compensated for this post as a reviewer, and the thoughts are my own. Obviously!!

4 thoughts on “Book review: Solving Cadence Moore

  1. OK, I vow I will not read this one. I had a similar experience with The Silent Patient. It is rare for me to be sorry I wasted my reading time on a bad book but it happens. As you did, I look for something to take away. You did a good job on that!


  2. Pingback: WWW Wednesday October 16, 2019 | Words And Peace

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