D.w.'s Reviews > Through a Glass, Deadly

Through a Glass, Deadly by Sarah Atwell
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's review
Sep 06, 11

bookshelves: fiction, reviewed
Read in September, 2011

This book had potential. And up to the last third, it was going to be a much better book than it turned out to be.

We know from certain obvious marketing tells, that this is a murder mystery. Not the least being that the back cover material tells us so. There is a body. Then the ubiquitous second body also.

There are spoilers in this review because the work warrants it.

Atwell has a few stumbling blocks in the beginning, the least of which is her mother hen attitude of the new person in her life. How she decides the girl has an Irish face? (What is that?) and that she sounds Irish, when we read every piece uttered by the character and any vernacular comes much later.

Moving past that, we get into the murder, the mystery, then the clues coming together. A lot of telling. Not too much showing. That is something to work on.

We get background and see what glassblowing is, and how it relates to the mystery. But then it is all solved.

And only 2/3rds of the book. Not enough red herrings. No wrong paths. Just simple and straightforward, and with the Chief of Police and an FBI agent along for the ride, they couldn't get there.

But really it is the outside character who shows up and has so much of the detail of 'why' things have happened. And then, to make it dramatic, we kidnap one character and without any mystery any longer, just have to gather the ransom and make an exchange. 100 pages to do this, where our minds are not engaged. Where there are no puzzles to solve. It is point A to B to C...

That is what is not forgivable in this work. That is why it is merely average. That is why Atwell, unless I become rich with a great deal of leisure time, won't find me reading any more in this serious.

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