Review of Mistaken Identity Crisis by James J. Cudney

Congratulations to Jay on the publication of his latest novel, Mistaken Identity Crisis, Book 4 in the Braxton Campus Mysteries.

A clever thief with a sinister calling card has invaded Braxton campus. Meanwhile, a string of jewelry thefts, remarkably similar to an unsolved eight-year-old-case, is taking place in town.

When a body is discovered at the campus, Kellan is called in to investigate. And if the latest murder isn’t enough to keep him busy, Kellan partners with April to end the Castigliano and Vargas crime family feud.

As the summer heat begins to settle in Wharton County, what other surprises are in store?

Available on Amazon and via Kindle Unlimited.

Mistaken ID Crisis

One thing I love about this book and the entire series is the relationships. There are several key connections to focus on but all are done really well.  The beauty of these relationships is they help the readers connect with the series more and make us want to find out what happens next in the lives of these well-fleshed out characters.  There are a couple partnerships I adore. 

Kellan and April: Well… I’m not sure I saw that coming, and are we really sure that’s where it’s going? They’re so wonderfully awkward together; just a couple books ago they could barely stand each other.  Cupid strikes and a tentative friendship blossoms, then that amicability develops into something more natural and chemistry filled.  Their banter plays really well into this and I’m happy to see Kellan finally appreciate how good April is at her job!

Kellan and Emma:  Their father-daughter relationship has always been a sweet spot and in this story, we see it at a deeper level and feel it too.  There are a couple of scenes where readers can really feel for Kellan, the parent who wants to protect his little girl.  

Kellan and Gabriel:  The sibling relationship is a delight to watch unfold, especially as it is quite different from the Kellan-Eleanor relationship.  We see Kellan fighting for his brother, challenging his brother, teasing his brother and being messed with in return.  It’s such a fun interaction to read.  Gabriel himself is a very complex character.  I hope we get to see more of him and Sam.  I also can’t wait to find out more about Gabriel’s mysterious ex!

Kellan and his parents:  Kellan has a bit of a breakthrough with his dad, Wesley.  This shows the family patriarch in a more human capacity and shows him as a devoted father who really does want the best for his kids.  I like the constant growth in these characters and their relationships.

Kellan and Francesca:  How does one cope with a not-so-dead-deceased-wife??  How Kellan and Francesca circle each other and try to figure out their crazy reality, while keeping Emma’s needs a priority, makes for intriguing reading.

There are several scenes/ sub-stories I thoroughly enjoyed in this book:

  • Kellan ‘handling’ Marcus Stanton.
  • The calla lily story.
  • Continued interesting tidbits about the town’s history.
  • The playing out of the Kellan-Francesca saga.
  • The introduction of Cristiano Vargas.

There are a lot of characters in Mistaken Identity Crisis.  It may be a wee bit hard to keep track of them all in the early chapters, especially if you’re not a series follower.  That said, the author does a good job of differentiating each one and building up the relationships. It does get easier as the story develops.   

The mystery itself is truly well-done. There are enough red herrings to really throw us off the trail. Setting up several characters as possible culprits, keeping readers guessing through mean-girl-wars and throwing in various past relationships.  The clues are laid in each conversation and some are hidden in plain sight but yet not obvious.  In reality we have three crimes to figure out.  Even if you pick up on any of these people from the get go, the motives, opportunities and true identities are sufficiently muddied to keep you guessing. 

In terms of standalone viability, I don’t think you can get the best experience if you haven’t followed some of the threads from earlier books.  That said, it’s still an enjoyable read on its own. Additionally, a major series arc comes to an end in this one, opening up Book 5 as a ‘new beginning’ of sorts. 

Overall, another fantastic instalment.  I said it for Book 3, but Book 4 really is the best yet.  I wonder if Book 5 will usurp it? Can’t wait to find out. 

I give this book 5/5 unmistaken espresso shots.

31 thoughts on “Review of Mistaken Identity Crisis by James J. Cudney

Add yours

      1. So boring!! Has he gone?
        As if Jay does not know me by now!! I flirt with him too, he pretends he has not heard it… I love the way he brushes me away 😂😂😂😂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Gosh, Nina! I’m so behind this series but you’ve just made me want to catch up on this one like ASAP! My goodness, I’m so excited. Brilliant review!!!

    Liked by 2 people

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