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Chasing Symmetry (Riley's Peak #1)
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Chasing Symmetry

(Riley's Peak #1)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  67 ratings  ·  30 reviews
Someone had been trying for the perfect shade of red . . .
When art professor Bianca James tries to save a dying woman, the grudge-holding chief of police is all too quick to catapult her to the top of the suspect list. As if that isn’t enough, her ex-boyfriend’s younger brother, Finn Tierny, is assigned to the case, and she’s faced with a trilogy of dilemmas: go head to head
Kindle Edition, 297 pages
Published May 25th 2016 by Pocket Acorn Press
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Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  67 ratings  ·  30 reviews

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Barb Taub
Aug 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
Bianca James has a duck problem. Like her father before her, she’s an artist with a goal of winning the Wildlife Conservatory competition. After her mother died, her father had dreamed of winning with his painting of a solitary duck. Now an art professor herself, Bianca has inherited that dream and wants to win for both herself and her dead parents. Her entries feature two ducks, but she hasn’t been satisfied with any of her efforts so far. Her ducks just don’t seem to be a true pair. Perhaps he ...more
Caroline Noe
Jan 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
An engrossing love triangle, wrapped in a crime thriller and tied with an art metaphor. Blake has created a whole community of characters whose tangled history gradually unfolds with each clue. I wasn't surprised to learn that there's a sequel.

The opening crime and it's subsequent solving is well written, even given that I found the reveal scene a little narrative heavy, but it's in the love story that this book finds its strength. A fun and compelling read.
Barbara Hagedal
Jul 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful! I was instantly engrossed in the story and characters. Just when I thought I had things figured out, there was a new unexpected turn. I highly recommend this book!
Christi Whitson
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An amazing start to a great series!

Tempeste Blake has a unique and impressive style. She has a gift for analogies and paints a true picture with her words, which makes it ironic, perhaps, that the female lead is an artist. All of the characters are realistic and relatable, but I think I enjoyed Bianca the most.

We get into the action of the story right away with a crime scene and the politics of a small town dealing with a murder. Not to mention the sticky history between the mains. As their c
Jun 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I just finished “Chasing Symmetry,” by Tempeste Blake and was blown away at how fantastic this novel was! Let me begin by saying that Tempeste Blake is actually a collaboration between two writers Nancy Smith and Cat Trizzino who met in an online writers’ group, but there is not one moment in the novel where you would ever guess that this was co-authored. “Chasing Symmetry” is part romance, part crime, part suspense and is an absolute finish in one sitting read.

I hate to do a bullete
Jan 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Romantic crime fiction with an edge, this gently-built novel ticks a number of boxes.

Bianca is shocked enough to find a dead woman in her office, but throw in a chief of police with a grudge, a self-imploding ex-boyfriend, and Finn, said ex’s brother, and your have a perfect storm of mayhem and romance to add to your murder…

The plot was decent, the characters interesting, and the structure flowed well. Slow, simmering, and tense, this was a little over-dramatic for my rea
Jennifer S. Alderson
Nov 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, romance
Enjoyable romance with an art-related mystery driving the story.
Janice Richardson
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed-rated
“The wind bullied a fern hanging from the porch eaves..."
This line jumped off the page early in the plot. While romance may not be my genre of choice, I was swept into this story by the flow of carefully and expertly crafted phrases. Blake sets the stage so the reader is caught up in the story, putting her at the top of her genre. An intelligent read with a suspenseful plot that keeps you engaged.
Pamela Allegretto
May 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A well-written, cohesive, and entertaining drama. Although similes and metaphors abound, they are implemented in a creative manner that makes this work an enjoyable read.
Brittany's Pages
Nov 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, 2017, bookgobbler
Bianca James thinks she has her life together. She teaches art at the local college, dotes on her car Picasso, and she has a wonderful best friend. But when Bianca discovers a murdered woman in the school’s storage closet, things become a bit more complicated.

Finn Tierny has returned to Riley’s Peak to help take care of his father. He joins the police force and is part of the crew that responds to the murder scene. He is surprised to see Bianca, his former art teacher and his older brother’s ex
Jacqueline (Fall In Love With The Sound of Words)
Tempeste Blake kindly offered me a copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my opinions of this novel. They are my own and no one else's.

Now that the disclaimer is done, let's dive in shall we!

Chasing Symmetry is a standard murder mystery with a really enjoyable romance thrown in. You follow along with Bianca James, an art teacher, who stumbles over a dying woman, attempts to save her, and then tries to keep the chief of police from c
Jun 24, 2016 rated it liked it
Bianca James has a steady job and a steady life, even if her love life is a shambles. But when she finds the dead body of a woman at the college where she works, a normal life is no longer an option. Murder is not a regular occurrence in the small town of Riley's Peak, and it sends shock waves throughout the community. But with a Chief of Police who bears a grudge against Bianca, an ex-boyfriend who is self-imploding, and a murderer who has set his sights on her, everything has become a lot more ...more
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Chasing Symmetry by Tempeste Blake is a marvellous nail-biting contemporary murder mystery that intrigues from the start.
Lives are easily shattered. The novel explores how a traumatic event can have far reaching effects. "He couldn't stop blaming himself." Unable to face the future except by looking through the bottom of a glass. Trauma changes lives.
Mothers are important. When mothers leave - either through choice or death - families are changed. Children need their mothers. Husband
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love a mystery that is solvable. This was a cleverly plotted whodunit, layered with drama, and romance. The pace is perfect, tension steadily building with both the mystery and danger it adds, as well as the relationships both dramatic and romantic. This story was filled with so much emotion.

The characters, primary and secondary are rich, dimensional, and felt real. I was instantly drawn in by both Finn and Bianca. Finn spoke to my heart as I grew to know him- a good man with a hau
Carrie Westmoreland Kurtz
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
I love murder mysteries! When I was contacted about reading this book, I was beyond excited! And then when I received it in the mail along with a note and special little "gift" from the author, I was ecstatic! I wanted to dive right in... but, sadly, my TBR list was ridiculously long so I had to wait a while.

So, the time came that I could get into this book and I wasn't disappointed! I am usually pretty good at figuring out 'who done it' but not this time. I was wrong! Very wrong. Th
Sandy Wallace
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Small Town, Twisted Tale

Art instructor Bianca James discovers a woman’s body in her class storage room. When the police investigation begins, she becomes caught in a web of lies, threats, vengeance and madness.

This story centers around Bianca and her relationships with two brothers. Dylan, her drunken, angry ex-lover and ex-cop, wants her back, but she is fighting her feelings for his younger brother Finn, a former art student and now one of the cops investigating the murder. Su
Linda Brendle
Nov 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Chasing Symmetry by Tempeste Blake is a venture into the world of art, academia, and intrigue. It is a world filled with interesting characters like Bianca, the art professor and unwilling crime scene investigator; Finn, the tough cop caught between his feelings for his prime suspect and his loyalty to his brother; and Helen, the ageless hippie/mystic next door. The story kept my attention from the beginning, making me look for excuses to pick up my Kindle again. I was a little disappointed in t ...more
Lucia Davis
Nov 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
A murder mystery with a strong romantic component. The romance was enjoyable, with well developed characters. The mystery had a lot of good twists, and kept me guessing.
Cassie Faber
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is my second Tempest Blake novel, and just like the first, it did not disappoint!

I adore Tempeste’s writing style, as it makes you feel as if you are right there alongside the characters! The world is rich, and the characters well developed and layered.

Bianca James lives in the small town of Riley’s Peak where she works as an art teacher. She stumbles upon a dead body of a woman at the college where she works, and her life starts to unravel as Bianca becomes a sleuth intent on solving the
Jan 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
A good balance of romance and mystery

This murder mystery romance starts out strong with Bianca, an art professor, discovering a murdered woman in her classroom supply closet. On top of being fresh out of a relationship with Dylan, a police detective ruined by an unfortunate accident, and the sudden reappearance of Dylan’s intriguing younger brother, Finn, Bianca’s life quickly devolves into confusion and chaos.

It doesn’t help that the town’s grouchy police chief seems to want to pi
Kiki Z
Sep 28, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: unfinished
DNF'd at 33% and then I read from 80% to the end. Too much focus on the romantic aspect, even though the love triangle is just bad. And the end isn't even remotely surprising. I saw it coming about ten miles away which is why I skipped to the end. The writing style is also a mild issue here. This is written by two different people under one pseudonym, and while it doesn't necessarily read as two different people, it does read as unnatural in places, and I just wasn't invested enough in the story ...more
Jessica Bone
Apr 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful First Book

The writing style of Tempeste Blake is a style onto her own. Her first book Chasing Symmetry is a glimpse into Romantic Mystery in a small town of Riley's Peak. Her portrait of an independent artist with a full range of emotions and to also include a difficulty written character fighting a debilitating disease and how she was able to accurately show the family effected by that illness impressed me. I will be adding all of her books to my library as they come available. A
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Chasing Symmetry is the first book in the Riley’s Peak Series by Tempeste Blake. I love a good mystery. One that keeps you guessing until the very end. The storyline was well written and creative, full of mystery, suspense, with some romance in the mix. I couldn’t put it down. This was a fantastic read and highly recommend. I’m ready for the next one
Wendy Risher
Apr 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An intriguing, romantic book that is full of suspense! This book had me constantly guessing. I love these types of stories where you are never sure who to trust in a plot that twists and turns. Also, there is excellent character development. I felt connected to the main characters and their growth. Furthermore, the personalities of the supporting characters and the relationships are described very well. I definitely recommend this book. I've already started reading the next one!
Susan Shafer
Jun 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book! Loved the characters. Would love to sit and chat with each one of them. Story had some great twists. My prediction on who done it was wrong and I loved the surprise. Highly recommend this one.
Dec 27, 2016 rated it liked it
This is a really good mystery -- lots of twists and turns and so many suspects! The characters are interesting, and the details about art - one of the main characters is an artist - ring true and add considerable interest to the story. I didn't care so much for the romance aspect of the novel.
Jacqueline Gunn
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A small town mystery wrapped in a romance!

Blake has a dazzling writing style and I was immediately drawn into the story, wondering how it would unfold. The characters are strong and realistic while the plot twists and turns the whole way. Just when you think you have it figured out -- guess again. I've always been fascinated with small towns, so I loved the setting as well.

This was an exciting, intriguing read that blended the suspense of a good mystery and the chemistry of a good r
Leah Skinner
May 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Chasing Symmetry is so compelling, you'll be hooked from the first paragraph.

Blake's writing is clever, creative, intriguing, and engaging. The writing is so descriptive that I could truly 'see' this story unfold as I read. The dialogue is exceptional: it reads so well, playing out like a real-time conversation.

This book is incredible and I am so impressed by its style and tone. There's drama, mystery, intrigue, suspense, and romance-- everything a good story needs. I am hooked on t
Sydney Mann
Oct 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
An enjoyable and entertaining read that is equal parts suspense, mystery and romance. I was impressed by the writing and level of complexity of the characters, plot and story. I would definitely read more from this author!
Erin Knuth
Jul 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
I loved that every character was dimensional and flawed. The authors demonstrate real narrative skill and expressive prose throughout - the book was just beautiful. Of course, I had to love Finn, our resident protector, and sweet Bianca. Excited to read Dylan's story in Chasing Gravity!

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When Nancy Smith and Cat Trizzino met in an online writers’ group, their individual styles blended to a shared vision. Though they live in different states, Nancy in Michigan, Cat in Maryland, their passion for well-crafted stories makes the physical distance irrelevant. Tempeste Blake is the result of their combined voices, an author who writes grab-the-tissue-box, heart-in-your-throat romantic s ...more