Review: Roadkill by Alexandra Allred

Roadkill by Alexandra Allred
Series: Allie Lindell Series (# 1)
Release Date: August 15, 2013
Publisher: The Writer’s Coffee Shop
Pages: 196
Source: book provided by NetGalley for review

When dead prostitutes begin to appear along the rural roads of Ohio, Allie Lindell cannot stay away despite the odds—the odds being her badge-toting sister; her partner, who only wants Allie to stay home and out of harm’s way; and two little girls in full potty-training and tantrum-throwing modes. But when an old friend from The Columbus Dispatch calls with an intriguing job opportunity, Allie can’t turn her away, Allie breaks all kinds of promises to track the killer, heat up a cold case, and discover what happened to a fallen police officer. As she navigates the backstreets of Columbus, following pimps, prostitutes, sullen teenagers, and seedy gamblers, the only thing more complicated is remembering all her aliases.

Enlisting the help of her neighbor, and with the annoying voice of Snow White drumming through her head, Allie and her newfound sidekick will have you falling in love with this wonderful cast of modern heroines with day-to-day problems. Gay, straight, sleek and sexy, or rumpled and ragged—no matter how much they bicker, they’re a mighty force when they all come together. Heigh Ho!

Roadkill is the first in a series in which a former journalist and at-home mom discovers she has a knack for investigating murders. While she longs for the crazy deadlines and adult conversations, she also wants to stay home and care for her babies.

With Disney tunes, tantrums, and potty-training woes on her mind, Allie Lindell must learn to juggle the highs and lows of her family and a career she never knew she always wanted. This is the funny, sometimes aggravating, ultimately heartwarming story of a woman trying to give everything to her kids, keep the love of her partner, and not lose herself in the process.


Review: Alexandria Allred’s writing is refreshing and straightforward. The opening paragraph drew me right in and the story kept pulling at me, tugging me this way and that. I couldn’t wait to see where Allie went next, which character would show up, and how long her kids lasted in the back seat, not to mention which name she would use.

As a single mother, my daughter went everywhere I went and Allred’s descriptions of life spent hauling around a two-year-old are spot on. As Allie succumbs to French Fries to quiet a tantrum or quietly closes a car door so as to not wake a sleeping child, I know this is written from real life. The scene where the adults cannot understand that “tic” means “I want to go to the store and get a sticker” is hilarious.

Yet her description of a simple cupcake made my mouth water – “Franconia’s frosting is pure sugar, butter, yogurt, and sprinkles of something that could only have come from the flutters of a fairy’s wing.” I could <i>taste</i> the chocolate in this cupcake, I could <i>feel</i> texture of the cake and the frosting coming together in my mouth for that one sinful bite, and I think I gained those 800 calories just reading about them; but they were such delicious words and so worth every calorie.

I loved that we got both sides of the story of how Rae Ann and Allie first met. We read as Allie tells how she watches Rae Ann play softball and Rae Ann doesn’t know she’s in the bleachers, yet later we find out Rae Ann did know Allie was there and contrived to meet her. The descriptions of that day were so touching, I could feel the emotions of that first “zing” and then came that line – “In that moment, I’d known exactly who I was. I had spent two decades in uncertainty, but in those two seconds, I’d figured out exactly who I was and who I wanted.” – and tears came to my eyes.

I had such a good time with Allie in <i>Road Kill</i>. It was pure fun to follow this woman around picking up clues while she toted babies, soothed ruffled partners, and deterred those trying to stop her from putting a little excitement back into her life. Allie was real, she could be any one of us, and I can’t wait for her next adventure.

Favorite Quote: Obituaries are little bits of history. No, they don’t tell you how a person made the decisions he did or why life events happened the way they did, but they do tell you how a person ended up: four kids, a military career, and so on. Every now and again, however, if you dig a little deeper, you can find a really interesting person – someone who’s done all the things you wanted to do. Someone who invented the golf cart or stood next to MacArthur during the Korean War – and that’s the obit that makes you ponder your own life experiences, what you have accomplished, and where you are going. What will be written about you when you die?