Archive for 'Sprinkle, Patricia'
This book is very interesting because there are some things the author does really well and some things she doesnâ€™t. The hero of the piece, MacLaren Yarbrough, a 60-something magistrate from Georgia, is on a bus tour of the Scotland with her friend Laura. MacLaren soon discovers that everyone on the bus except herself seems to have ulterior motives for the trip â€“ some of them not very pleasant.
The first thing that Sprinkle does well is to start the book off at the end of the trip when a body is discovered â€“ but she doesnâ€™t tell us who the corpse is. So we read through the account of the trip wondering just who is going to be killed and the suspense builds until the name is revealed. Along the way, she creates interesting characters, relationships, and motives.
What she doesnâ€™t do well, however, is slip the important information in under the radar. I suspect that authors walk a difficult line between not giving the reader enough information to solve the mystery and revealing the important clues so thoroughly that it is obvious that that is what they are. Unfortunately, all the important information in this book sticks out like sore thumbs and as soon as these tidbits are revealed, the reader knows exactly what they mean to the plot and solution of the mystery.
The other thing that bothered me about this book is that Sprinkle leaves a significant piece of business unfinished at the end of the book. Inaction on this issue causes MacLaren to act out of character â€“ and I just hate it when characters do that. When authors cause their characters to be inconsistent, they undermine the integrity of the characters they create and we readers rebel.
Did I guess it? Oh, yes. However, that being said, this book is still worth a read. I am curious to see if the other books in this series have the same shortfalls.