“Public Trust” by Tess Shepherd BOOK REVIEW

Public Trust

Publication Date: January, 15th 2021

Publisher: Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA)

ISBN: 9798555042514

Series: The City of Dreams #1

Genre: Romance, Mystery

Strong Point: I liked the main character, Lola. The story, a mixture of romance and mystery, is quite interesting.

Weak Point: More explanation about the killer’s motivation and more focus on police work would have made the book a four stars one.  

Books on Tour Rating: Books on Tour Logo(3/5)

Goodreads Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4.30/5)

Read book blurb here


A new book by a new author. A mixture of romance and mystery. Count me in! 

I am always eager to find new authors. It is exciting to read their first book so I requested “ Public Trust” in NetGalley and got it almost immediately. 

Although I only gave it three stars, the book is nice. An easy read, it has a good, solid story and the characters are quite well developed, specially the protagonist, Lola.

It contains the typical clichés of a romantic novel (which sometimes makes my teeth clench) but it is not the worst I have read. So let’s talk about it.


Lola Michaels is 32 years old. A painter, she lives alone in Los Angeles because her relationship with her adoptive parents is not very good. They are both academics and Lola is, in her parents’ words “just a painter”. 

One night while she is asleep in her bed, she feels a presence in her room. A man is lurking in the shadows. She feels his fingers on her neck, manages to scream and the man escapes. 

Lola contacts the police but somehow they do not believe her story. However, Lieutenant Jacob Simmone thinks Lola is telling the truth. Plus he finds her very hot and he feels very attracted to her (I am rolling up my eyes!!). 

The bodies of three dead women have appeared in the city so Simmone decides to guard Lola in case the killer decides to come back for her as she is the only one who could identify him (although she was sleeping!). 

Lola and the Lieutenant got closer and closer together which makes his work quite complicated, as he should not get involved with a victim in a case he is investigating.

From there, the story gets more and more interesting and there is a very clever twist which makes the book worth reading. 


In Chapters 9 and 20, the narrator changes to show the readers the point of view of the killer. It is quite interesting and fills the story with a different perspective.

We learn about his motivation for killing women (apart from the fact that he is a murderer, of course). There is no excuse for what he is doing, but it is always intriguing to think what would make someone ends someone else’s life, and here the author makes a good job at imagining that. However, his perspective is quite superficial and it only explains why he killed the women and nothing more. 

In addition to this, Simmone’s point of view is also quite intriguing: he is trying to do his job as best he can but at the same time, he feels as if he is being “distracted” by his feelings for Lola. He is a good policeman but he is also a man. This dualism makes his role in the story quite interesting.  


As I said before, the main attraction of this book is the mixture of genres, namely romance and mystery/thriller. 

Furthermore, characters are reliable and well built and although a romance in core, the story is not flat and simple, but rich and complex. In addition, some of the secondary characters were also great; some of them even better than the protagonist couple. 

However, I miss a bit more focus on the investigation. A good part of the book is filled with cops and surveillance, but very little is said about their methods to catch the killer. But I guess this would be too much to ask with the romance and the mystery also in the mix.

In addition to this, the cliché of “weak woman has to be protected and saved by a strong man from the evils of this world” is a quite outdated and I am really sure there is a better way to depict such a romantic relationship. For this I am a true fan of “Jane Eyre”.

Anyway, if you want to enjoy a nice, easy to read book with a good, entertaining story, I recommend you to read “Public Trust”. 

Thanks to the publisher, Independent Book Publishers Association, the author Tess Shepherd and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of “Public Trust” for review purposes.