Killers of a Certain Age by Deanna Raybourn–ATLP Book Review

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Killers of A Certain Age book cover against a woman's legs on couch

The Stats

  • Releases Sept 6
  • 348 pages
  • Thriller meets Genre Fiction
  • Mature narrators
  • Travel

SYNOPSIS

In Killers of A Certain Age, four women have to confront their retirement–like most working women in their sixties–except these women don’t have a typical job…they’re assassins.

Billie, Mary Alice, Helen, and Natalie have worked for an organization, ominously called “The Museum,” since the 1970s. But, with new technology on the rise, the world of assassin training has changed and they’ve been replaced with newer, younger version of themselves. As a reward for their many years of hard work, the women are given a retirement vacation on a cruise line, gifted from their employer. Yet, when the women notice something is amiss, they realize that The Museum might actually be trying to kill them off–they just aren’t sure why.

In this exciting thriller, with an incredibly unique cast of characters, four women will have to figure out why their longtime employer is after them, without any of the resources they once had, to get out alive. Killers of a Certain Age is National Treasure meets Nursing Home in this fun twist on what happens as we get older.


KILLERS OF A CERTAIN AGE REVIEW

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I received Killers of a Certain Age through Berkley Publishing, and to be honest, it came at the perfect time. I’ve been sick all week, so it’s been tough to do anything beyond leaving my couch, and Killers of a Certain Age was the wild ride that I most definitely needed.

First of all, this book has SUCH a cinematic quality. It made me feel as if I were watching a movie, instead of reading a book. Though, I’m not sure I was getting “thriller” vibes as much as I was action-movie. The vibe of this book is more National Treasure or Uncharted (so if you’re a fan of those movies, you’ll definitely love this). Though, instead of our usual Scarlett-Johannsen-as-the-Black-Widow-type assassin, we’ve got a group of older ladies that have realistically hilarious commentary, even if their problems are a little out of this world.

The book follows two different perspectives–we have a third person omniscient narrator for the scenes from the 1970s and then Billie’s first person perspective for the rest of the book. I found the change in perspective to be a little weird, and as a reader, it threw me off a bit. I think I would have preferred maybe a different character narrating the 1970s scenes. Though, now that I think about it, I think this book certainly would have benefited from seeing the other characters perspectives. Don’t get me wrong, I love Billie, but I think the book needed that extra depth character like Helen (who is widowed) might have provided.

That being said, Billie does a great job telling the story. Billie seems to believe that she’s the most held together, and she takes on the leadership role for much of the book. Though each character holds a different aspect to the team–Natalie is charismatic, Mary Alice is the heart, Helen is crazy observant–but Billie? She is brave in a way that leads the other three women on her team. She is a thinker, and I think they respect that. Heck, I respected it.

One of the things I loved most about this book was the very realistic problems that the women face due to their age. Beyond their problems as assassins being hunted by their organization, the women struggle with fatigue, hot flashes, and even emotional distress. The dry humor and banter between the four is priceless. That being said, I really think that the book could have used the tone of an older narrator. While the plotline follows older women, the book itself didn’t give me the mature voice that I’ve noticed in a few other books, like Remarkably Bright Creatures. I would have liked to see Killers of a Certain Age take on a little bit more depth, even though it was such a fun plot.


OVERALL THOUGHTS

Overall, I really enjoyed Killers of a Certain Age and I’m thankful for the ARC from Berkley Publishing. I think this is such a fun read and I foresee it being a favorite on shelves of bookstores everywhere. That being said, even though I enjoyed the exciting plotline and the unique narrators, I would have liked to see a little more depth explored throughout the book. For that reason, this book has received a 4 star rating from me.

Though I haven’t read anything by Deanna Raybourn before, I really enjoyed Killers of a Certain Age and I can certainly see myself picking up more of her books in the future.

If you’d like to check out this book yourself, you can pre-order it on Amazon here. The book releases on September 6, 2022.

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