Sunday 20 March 2011

Dangerously Placed

Dangerously Placed by Nansi Kunze (Random House)
PB RRP $17.95
ISBN 978-1-8647-1882-9
Reviewed by Oliver Phommavanh

Dangerously Placed is a novel for teenage readers about friends who do work experience in various places. The main character Alex Thaler lands a dream placement in Virk, a company that has a ‘virtual’ office. Workers wear a Virtual Reality suit and enter this computer-generated environment, mingling with employees from all over the globe. Alex wants to extend her stay in this technologically advanced company with a graduate position. But she gets more than she bargains for, when her fiery boss is virtually murdered and actually dies in real life.

Alex is a likeable lead character. As she moves up and down the prime suspect list, she’s determined to find the killer herself with the help of her goofy friends. They’re a hoot, joking around when times get tough.  
I also really enjoyed the technological aspects of the novel, working in a virtual office sounds like fun but this ‘not too distant future’ side is never really explored. The novel switches from thriller to romance effortlessly, so it’s a frisky read from start to finish. There are two love interests thrown into the mix, though the tension fades halfway. Still, readers will like Alex’s romantic reactions.
Dangerously Placed is an amusing story that mix-mashes genres. It’s hard to say if strictly romance or thriller fans will like it, but I think they should give it a go. Recommended for ages 13 and up.          

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