Overkill - Book Review - Why Words Work - Book Cover

Book Review: Overkill by Vanda Symon

I was given a free copy of Overkill as part of the Overkill book blog tour in exchange for an honest review.

Huge thank you to Anne Cater, Vanda Symon, and Orenda Books for the opportunity to be part of this book blog tour!

Vanda Symon - Overkill - Book Review - Why Words Work
Published By Orenda Books


When the body of a young mother is found washed up on the banks of the Mataura River, a small rural community is rocked by her tragic suicide. But all is not what it seems. Sam Shephard, sole-charge police constable in Mataura, soon discovers the death was no suicide and has to face the realisation that there is a killer in town.

To complicate the situation, the murdered woman was the wife of her former lover. When Sam finds herself on the list of suspects and suspended from duty, she must cast aside her personal feelings and take matters into her own hands.

To find the murderer … and clear her name.


I am unsure how to feel about this book.

The plot was an intriguing one. The initial chapter drew me in almost immediately, presenting a novel that was ominous in tone, yet frantic in its action sequences. The pacing was fine, if a little slow in places, and I genuinely couldn’t guess who the murderer was until the end.

On the other hand, I found the main narrative voice – namely of our protagonist Sam – to be slightly grating at times. This is purely a personal opinion, and I know this because Sam’s character voice is incredibly strong throughout the book. It’s the sign of a good book that a protagonist, even if I do not get on with them, leaps off the page; a weaker book without a strong character voice wouldn’t produce that feeling.

Even so, Sam as a character was just not my cup of tea. She is resourceful and brave, but the cynical assumptions of the other characters and her sassy, internal monologue just brushed me up the wrong way. I didn’t dislike her – in fact, I thought she was written very well – but I wasn’t exactly rooting for her throughout.

Overall, this is a book with an engaging plot and a strong protagonist. It may not have been my thing, but I still had a pretty good time reading it. If you like plot-driven crime novels, or a well-paced but not too blood-thirsty thriller, this might be for you.

Overkill Blog Tour Poster


Once again, huge thanks for being included on this book blog tour. Don’t forget to check out the other stops on this tour, as well as Vanda Symon’s Facebook and website. And hey, if you have read this book, let me know what you thought down in the comments below!


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