Quarter to Midnight by Karen Rose Book Review Read it later

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Contributor Cindy J

This post is all about Quarter to Midnight by Karen Rose!

Police procedural books are one of my go-to genres, and romance novels are slowly creeping onto my TBR list. When I saw that Quarter to Midnight was a romantic suspense story about corruption, I had to see what it was all about.


Gabe Herbert is a proud chef at his restaurant in the French Quarter of New Orleans. When he is notified of his father’s suicide, Gabe immediately suspects there’s more to his father’s death than what he is being told by his father’s colleagues at the NOLA Police Department. Getting nothing from the police, Gabe hires his dad’s friend, who is a private investigator. Burke Broussard worked with Gabe’s father, Rocky, but left the force to better serve those looking for justice. Rocky Herbert was a hard-working police officer with the NOLA PD. He loved his son, but kept secrets from him; secrets that will be tough to understand. Leading the investigation is Molly Sutton, Broussard’s toughest investigator. Burke and Molly are close friends who served in the military together and would do anything for one another. Molly, weighed down with emotional baggage, is a frequent visitor to the famous French restaurant in town. She is star struck when she learns that her new client is the handsome chef, but keeps a clear focus on the assignment as much as possible.

During the investigation, Molly and Gabe uncover information that points back to nearly two decades ago. During that time, Rocky learned of a crime that occurred during Hurricane Katrina, and whenever he made inquiries into the incident, he was blocked by top brass in the department. Events and individuals from the past were covered up. Rocky was onto these secrets, but would they have cost him his life? He kept many of his own secrets from those closest to him and now Gabe is determined to find out why. Molly and Gabe learn of other deaths that may be connected to the crime committed during the hurricane and now they worry if they are being targeted. A series of incidents are unfolding all around them, but they remain undeterred and form a terrific duo as they piece together all the clues.

This novel is a slow burn, but never boring. The storyline clips along with great pacing and it definitely held my attention throughout. At nearly 600 pages long, the culprit’s identity is revealed early on, but the reader only learns the complexities of those involved in small doses that add to the suspense. The book is primarily about the investigation into the death of Rocky Herbert and the corrupting circumstances surrounding it. There is also an undercurrent of suggested romance with some spicy scenes, but it’s spread out so I wouldn’t refer to this as a true romance book. 

Quarter to Midnight By Karen Rose

Genre: Mystery

When a police officer’s death is ruled a suicide, an investigation ensues that digs up a buried past–a past that was never meant to be uncovered. 

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I have rated this book four-and-a-half stars. The characters were well-developed and so charming!  Even the bad guys seemed authentic to New Orleans. The romantic tension between Gabe and Molly seeped through the pages, and I could feel their genuine chemistry. I enjoyed their relationship building even though their first encounter was well into the story. I felt that the buildup was in line with the pacing of the book, and that their romance wasn’t a distraction from the main storyline, but a nice addition to it. There were no drawbacks for me other than I didn’t have a personal connection so that is the only minor reason why I didn’t give five stars. 

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