Lissa's Reviews > Keeping Watch

Keeping Watch by Laurie R. King
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's review
Sep 27, 2007

really liked it
Read in April, 2007

I've read quite a few of Laurie R. King's novels - particularly her series of Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes mysteries. I was at the used bookstore and I ran across this book for $1.00 and figured it was worth a shot. This book is a departure from the mystery genre. Keeping Watch is really the story of Allen Carmichael, a Viet-nam veteran who goes into the business of illicitly helping abused children and mothers get away from their abusers. The first section of the book details his experiences in Vietnam, to give a psychological backstory on why Allen gets into the business of helping children.

His last case before retirement was supposed to be the rescue of 12-year-old Jamie, a boy emotionally victimized by his power-hungry father. The job was supposed to be very easy, but like all supposedly easy jobs in novels, there ended up being a lot more to the story than Allen realized at first glance. About two-thirds of the book is devoted to this particular case.

I found this book to be very engaging. It's certainly not great literature, but it's a nice quick read and made for fast subway rides. I thought some of her descriptive passages were a little forced and I thought that the portion that took place in Vietnam and after he arrives back in America was too long. The book really hits its stride when Jamie and Allen finally cross paths. Overall, a good read and definitely worth the dollar I spent on it!

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