Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Sole Intention / M A Comley

Reviewed by: Keith Nixon

Genre: Crime

Approximate word count: 60-65,000 words

Kindle  US: YES  UK: YES  Nook: YES  Smashwords: NO  Paper: NO
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Mel Comley gave up her job in retail ten years ago and, after a traumatic divorce, moved to France, a country she’d never even previously visited. After renovating a few houses, she took a creative writing course, following her life’s dream, and began to write.

You can learn more about the author on her blog.


Ex-police officers Ellen Brazil and Brian Lynx run a missing persons firm, specialized private investigators for hire. When Ellen takes on a new case for a bodybuilder little does she realize quite what consequences will result.


Something didn’t quite work for me with Sole Intention. It’s well written for sure, the author is clearly very experienced and portrays the character, place and action well. At times there is a strong suspense element, so nothing wrong there. So perhaps it is me.

Sole Intention deals with some difficult issues – murder, kidnap, rape and abuse among them, this is not, at times, a soft novel. Periodically we enter the killer’s head and witness events from his maniacal perspective. Not always easy reading and it’s well handled. The characters are decent, Ellen has to deal with family issues at the same time as the investigation.

Again I recognize this is being my ‘preference’ but generally the strength of the language didn’t match up to the events – for example there is hardly any swearing in the dialogue. I am not suggesting that swearing is a must, it isn’t. However the prose was sometimes nice, when the action wasn’t. Almost as if the author is more comfortable with another genre or events? It was interesting for sure.

The other element that concerned me slightly and made me question the story was quite quickly Ellen determines there are a lot of women missing and more occurring. They all bear a striking resemblance to each other and disappeared in similar circumstances. However the police are not interested in the case, there isn’t enough evidence. Really? Maybe, but I struggled to believe it. Also the killer’s mother showed varied responses to learning about her son’s activities. I could see what the author was trying to achieve, but I don’t think it quite worked.

M A Comley is a successful author who clearly knows her trade. Although a decent book this had a few issues for me, but I certainly will try others for comparison.


Grim events such as kidnap and rape, although not graphic.

Format/Typo Issues:


Rating: *** Three Stars

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