Friday, May 23, 2014

Dance of the Winnebagos-Big on humour, short on mystery

Dance of the Winnebagos by Ann Charles

"Dance of the Winnebagos" is a light little romantic mystery, heavy on the heavy breathing, light on the mystery.

Claire has been sent with her grandfather when he goes to Arizona to stay in an RV park with his buddies in the hopes of meeting some women.  Claire's job is to keep him out of trouble.  She's pretty clear that's not going to happen.  But when his dog finds a human femur in the desert and Claire find the hunky nephew of the RV park owner, she's in a lot more trouble than her grandfather is.

The answer to the mystery is pretty obvious from the beginning and it's seems it's just a background for Claire and Mac to get hot and heavy together.  That's ok if that's what you're looking for.  I prefer a little more mystery in my mysteries but I will say that this was a fun couple of hours read.  The grandfather and his friends are spicy, the RV park owner's daughter is realistic and the characters are likeable.  I'm sure I'll read the next in the series just to find out how the various relationships progress.  But I won't be reading them for the mystery.

Would I pay money for it?Yes but I would have a fairly low limit
Would I read more by this author? Yes
Would I recommend this to a friend? Depends on the friend.  The language and the degree of sexiness would definitely not be appropriate for everyone.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Strong Spirits-A fun look at the 1920's

Strong Spirits-A fun look at the 1920's

The cover of this book really drew me in. I love the look of the 1920's so it immediately intrigued me to read a mystery set in that era. The period details were rich so I wasn't disappointed. There was a lot to like here!

Daisy Gumm Majesty is a fake spiritualist. She makes her money holding seances and tarot card readings for the rich in her beautiful California town of Pasadena. She helps support her husband who was gassed in WWI and her parents, a bookkeeper and a chauffeur.

Though this says it is a mystery, the mystery element is weak. A crime is central to the story but there isn't anything very mysterious about it. The characters are so real and likeable however, that the lack of a strong mystery didn't faze me. I love the look at the day-to-day lives of the characters, both the lower income Gumms and the more wealthy Kincaids. Daisy's relationship to her handicapped husband and to the police detective seemed realistic to me.

The reason this didn't get more stars was an underlying agenda running through the book that I did not enjoy. I don't care if I have the same social beliefs as the author, I don't want to feel like I'm having social commentary thrown in my face when I'm reading for escapism and relaxation. Also, the editing could have been a little tighter in a couple of places where there was some noticeable repetition. I'll be reading the next one in the series in hopes I can enjoy the story and the characters without the social

Would I pay money for it?Yes
Would I read more by this author? Yes
Would I recommend this to a friend? Depends on the friend.  The social agenda running through would bother some of my friends.

Purchased as a freebie October 24, 2013