Thursday, January 7, 2016
Author: Elizabeth J. Duncan [Website][Twitter][Facebook]
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Series: Shakespeare in the Catskills Mystery, Bk 1
Length: 278 pages
Obtained: NetGalley. This is the 2nd NetGalley book I've gotten.
Why this book?:
It's a cozy mystery. I just LOVE the cover. I liked the Shakespeare production idea.
Before I comment on the book itself, I have to give some context. Usually the "Why this book?" field fills that function, but this needs more.
I was approved for the advance review copy of this title with the request that it be reviewed in the month it was published...November (though my memory is saying October). So I was delaying to time it right, then at the beginning of October, I went to start it and... my Kindle Keyboard that a lovely former-blogger friend sent me was ruined! The screen had been placed under too much pressure and now I couldn't read anything in the display. So I was left reading the book on a PC screen or my iPhone. Which I did, but slowed things down, because I love the eInk Kindle so much more and I needed time to mope.
I gave myself an extra week or two before finally starting the book. And my thoughts (what I remember of them) can be found in the "Comments" below. But even once I finished the book (before the deadline), I was being a horrible blogger and didn't post. So I've had a 2 month gap since reading this, and some memories are foggy. Keeping that in mind...
What made the most impact on me as I read this story was the protagonist.
Because Charlotte Fairfax is a tad off-putting with her condescension. She's British (despite an extended period residing in the States) and middle aged. Therefore, she has a much better grasp of etiquette and her experience has made her much more knowledgeable than the silly young Americans she works with. And apparently she feels as if not being technologically proficient is somehow the better position?
It's great that she overcame troubled times and is content with her role as costume mistress for a Shakespearean theater in a small town. She certainly has a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with her new intern. She generally seems like a nice enough person, and I like that she is an animal lover (or at least a dog lover).
As far as the mystery was concerned, I did notice some of Charlotte's investigation methods seemed off (such as the incredibly stupid stunt she pulls - breaking the law and jeopardizing the trust of a friend - partway into the story), but those can easily be fixed as she becomes more experienced at investigating.
Overall, the story was nice, and I'd continue with the series.