I started the latest tome (I mean I had been asked to review it after all, lol) and got about ten pages in. I realized I really, really wished I knew more about the characters NOW. Luckily, it was that night that I noticed the BBC had started airing the television series "The Inspector Lynley Mysteries" on our local channel. What luck!! I put the series on permanent tape and watched my first Lynley mystery right then and there. Loving the Lynley character and mystery series was a shoe in, even though I usually don't go for the British-type authors and mystery series, I found Lynley especially likable and his sidekick Sargent Havers a spectacular foil for his character. YAY, I had a new series of which I knew there were at least eighteen mysteries to devour. Happy Camper Here!
Ok, so I picked up this 700+ page book again. Now that I knew the general outline of the characters, I was ready to really enjoy a good mystery. Unfortunately, knowing who Lynley/Havers were didn't improve my reading enjoyment. It isn't the characters who make this book unenjoyable or even that it's mystery is convoluted with many twists and turns and extra characters, it's that this book could use a really good editor. Seriously, two hundred pages could easily be cut from this book and no story or plot line would be affected. It's a shame. After reading "Just One Evil Act" I went and read reviews on her other previous books, and then, much unlike me, I read reviews on THIS book. I have to admit I was relieved to find both that her other books have great reviews generally and this one seems to almost universally be thought of as long winded.
I hate writing bad reviews. I want to support authors. I can't imagine how much effort it must take to write even one book, but to keep a series interesting, on track and lively must be doubly difficult. I therefore find it hard to admit just how annoying I found reading this book to be. I was actually yelling at the book many times, telling the author to GET ON WITH THE STORY ALREADY!!
The story mainly takes place in Italy with Havers as the main character trying to solve the kidnapping of young Hadiyyah, her friend Azhar's daughter. The story idea and the look into Havers' character was the thing that initially appealed to me about this, the eighteenth book in George's Inspector Lynley series. I was excited to learn more about Barbara Havers, and I did throughout this book, but it was a painful trip. I slogged through way to many descriptions of the surroundings to get the wanted nuggets of information. One of the other huge mistakes, in my humble opinion, was the use of so many Italian sayings without an english translation. I found myself thinking I should be reading this book with a Italian to English dictionary on side.
Wishing everyone a very Happy New Years! YAAY, it's almost 2014!!!!!
If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.