Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata

First Line: A convenience store is a world of sound.
 
Tokyo resident Keiko Furukura has never "fit in", has never felt normal even in her own family, but when, at the age of eighteen, she starts working at Smile Mart as a convenience store worker, she finds peace and true purpose in her life. She understands the rules of social interaction because most of it is spelled out in the employee manual. She learns how to copy her fellow workers in how they dress and speak so well that she appears normal, and her younger sister helps her in crafting "normal" responses to questions her friends and co-workers may ask.
 
This has been Keiko's life for eighteen years. It's hard to tell where the convenience store ends and she begins. She's happy. She knows her place in the world. She contributes. But her family and those close to her aren't happy. Her family want her to be "cured" and to become a normal functioning part of society. They pressure her to find a husband. To get married. To have children. To be like everyone else. And this pressure leads Keiko to take desperate measures.
 
~
 
I was very fortunate with my immediate family. I knew from the age of eight that I didn't want to have babies. When I played house with the children across the street, I went to work and my "husband" stayed home with the kids. This feeling never changed, and no one in my immediate family ever tried to get me to "see sense". They were willing to let me be me even if it meant no husband and no babies. For several years in my working life, I supervised dozens of teenagers. Perhaps it was my way with them that made everyone think I was married and had at least six children. Even if it wasn't, at least no one bothered me about my lack of marital status and children; they already "knew" I was married. I was very lucky indeed because I saw many others being harassed by their families to conform.

Poor Keiko Furukura was not as fortunate as I. She's spent her entire life being the square peg everyone tries to pound into the round hole. Keiko tends to take everything literally, and when Murata described some incidents in her childhood, they made me laugh-- which has to be another indication that I'm a fellow square peg. Keiko is perfectly happy, but her family insists on her being "cured", on her meeting their expectations for her life. 

Convenience Store Worker is a little gem of a novella that sucked me right in. I knew that Keiko would bow to her family's pressure, and I hated that. I hoped that she would be strong enough to survive her attempt to please others and that she'd be able to return to being her kind of happy. I can see why Sayaka Murata is such a popular writer in Japan, and I will be looking for more of her work. Now if only more people would abide by her message in Convenience Store Worker: Don't stick your nose in someone else's business. Square pegs do have a place and a purpose in this world.
 
Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
Translated from the Japanese by Ginny Tapley Takemori.
eISBN: 9780802165800
Grove Atlantic © 2018
eBook, 135 pages
 
Novella, Standalone
Rating: A
Source: Purchased from Amazon.

The Answer Is...Reflections on My Life by Alex Trebek

First Line: Of all the projects in my professional career, I am starting off on this one with the most serious misgivings.
 
I'd been undecided on reading this book even though Alex Trebek has been a treasured part of my life for decades. Would I find it too sad? I can still have tears well in my eyes at the dedication to Trebek at the end of each Jeopardy! episode. A fellow reader assured me that it wasn't sad, and-- as a result of my adventures with a new format-- when I learned that both Ken Jennings and Alex himself narrated the audiobook, that was enough for me. I'd get the treat of listening to Alex tell me about his life. (For his voice was one of the most special things about him to me.)
 
The fellow reader was right; The Answer Is... isn't sad. And I learned a lot about Trebek as a man, a son, a husband, a father, a philanthropist. I was astonished to learn that we had several things in common, one of them being that our mothers were both sent to a tuberculosis sanatarium. 
 
The Answer Is... is illuminating, comforting, and uplifting. Even readers who haven't been fans of this very special man can enjoy this book... and I hope they do.

The Answer Is...Reflections on My Life by Alex Trebek
Narrated by Alex Trebek and Ken Jennings.
ASIN: B086WMN47P
Simon & Schuster Audio © 2020
Audiobook. 4 hours, 35 minutes.
 
Memoirs
Rating: B+
Source: Purchased from Audible.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

August 2021 New Mystery Releases!

 

Summer couldn't be going past any faster than if it sprouted wings and flew. With open wounds on this leg, I haven't been able to get in the pool which has always been my go-to seasonal reading spot, so it's a good thing that I feathered my nest here in the living room or what the British usually call the lounge. Lounge? That does fit because when I'm finished blogging, I immediately begin lounging with a book.

It's normal for me to keep my eyes peeled for new crime fiction to read, and I've compiled a list of my picks for the best new mysteries to read. I've grouped them according to their release dates, and the covers and synopses are courtesy of Amazon.

Now it's time to see if I'll be adding to your Need-to-Read lists. Let's take a look!


=== August 1 ===


Title: Tahoe Jade
Author: Todd Borg
Series: #19 in the Owen McKenna private investigator series set in Lake Tahoe (California and Nevada)
350 pages
 
*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.
 
Synopsis: "A Letter From Abe Lincoln

In the fall of 1861, President Abraham Lincoln wrote a letter to the new governor of California, Leland Stanford. Lincoln sent the letter by Pony Express, which went through Tahoe. The letter from Lincoln was intercepted, and it never reached Stanford.

An Assault, A Fire, A Kidnapping

160 years later, Firefighter Jade Jaso was assaulted in Sacramento. The next day she nearly died in a warehouse fire. A short time later, her rancher father was killed in a fall at Lake Tahoe. Then Jade disappeared.

A Coded Message

When Detective Owen McKenna is brought on the case, he finds Lincoln’s letter hidden in the personal effects of Jade Jaso’s father, who was a collector of historical memorabilia. The letter contains a coded message. McKenna learns that the message refers to a treasure Stanford had mentioned to Lincoln. Unfortunately, Jade’s father made the deadly mistake of talking about the letter. The information came to a brute of a man who would kill and torture anyone who got in the way of finding that treasure, including Jade and her father, as well as Owen McKenna and McKenna’s girlfriend Street Casey...


=== August 3 ===


Title: The Coldest Case
Series: #16 in the Bruno Chief of Police series set in southwestern France 
336 pages

Synopsis: "After attending an exhibit on the facial reconstruction of ancient skulls, Bruno wonders if this technology might provide an invaluable clue to a thirty-year-old cold case. But learning the identity of the murder victim is only the beginning.
 
The investigation quickly turns thorny and leads Bruno to a reclusive vintner, Henri Bazaine, whose education at a vocational school in a formerly Communist region has raised some eyebrows. An inquiry into the defunct school turns up shadowy reports of possible connections and funding from the Stasi, the repressive police agency of the former East Germany. The scrutiny on Henri intensifies once Bruno discovers that he was declared dead thirty years ago and has been living under an assumed name ever since.
 
The strange case is further complicated as Parisian bureaucrats get involved, hinting that essential diplomatic relations might be at stake. And to make matters even worse, the Dordogne is suffering from an intense summer drought that is sparking fires across the region. But as always, Bruno will keep a cool head through it all--and, bien sûr, takes time to enjoy a sumptuous Périgordian meal!
"


Title: Clark and Division
Historical Mystery, Standalone, set in 1940s Chicago, Illinois.
312 pages
 
*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.
 
Synopsis: "Chicago, 1944: Twenty-year-old Aki Ito and her parents have just been released from Manzanar, where they have been detained by the US government since the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, together with thousands of other Japanese Americans. The life in California the Itos were forced to leave behind is gone; instead, they are being resettled two thousand miles away in Chicago, where Aki’s older sister, Rose, was sent months earlier and moved to the new Japanese American neighborhood near Clark and Division streets. But on the eve of the Ito family’s reunion, Rose is killed by a subway train.

Aki, who worshipped her sister, is stunned. Officials are ruling Rose’s death a suicide. Aki cannot believe her perfect, polished, and optimistic sister would end her life. Her instinct tells her there is much more to the story, and she knows she is the only person who could ever learn the truth.

Inspired by historical events, Clark and Division infuses an atmospheric and heartbreakingly real crime fiction plot with rich period details and delicately wrought personal stories Naomi Hirahara has gleaned from thirty years of research and archival work in Japanese American history.


=== August 5 ===


Title: The Stone Chamber
Author: Kate Ellis
Series: #25 in the Wesley Peterson police procedural series set in southwestern England.
384 pages

Synopsis: "On a summer evening, Robert and Greta Gerdner are shot dead at their home in the Devon countryside.

DI Wesley Peterson suspects the execution-style murders might be linked to Robert's past police career - until Robert's name is found on a list of people who've been sent tickets anonymously for a tour of Darkhole Grange, a former asylum on Dartmoor.

Wesley discovers that other names on the list have also died in mysterious circumstances and, as he is drawn into the chilling history of the asylum, he becomes convinced that it holds the key to the case.

When his friend, archaeologist Neil Watson, finds the skeleton of a woman buried in a sealed chamber dating back to the fifteenth century at his nearby dig, Wesley wonders whether there might be a connection between the ancient cell and the tragic events at Darkhole Grange.

With the clock ticking, Wesley must solve the puzzle, before the next person on the list meets a terrible end . . .

Whether you've read the whole series, or are discovering Kate Ellis's DI Wesley Peterson novels for the first time, this is the perfect page-turner if you love reading Ann Cleeves and Elly Griffiths.
"


=== August 10 ===


Title: The Bitter Taste of Murder
Series: #2 in the Tuscan Mystery series set in Italy.
336 pages
 
*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.
 
Synopsis: "One year after moving to his late wife’s Tuscan hometown of Gravigna, ex-NYPD detective Nico Doyle has fully settled into Italian country life, helping to serve and test recipes at his in-laws’ restaurant.
 
But the town is shaken by the arrival of wine critic Michele Mantelli in his flashy Jaguar. Mantelli holds his influential culinary magazine and blog over Gravigna’s vintners and restaurateurs. Some of Gravigna's residents are impressed by his reputation, while others are enraged—especially Nico's landlord, whose vineyards Mantelli seems intent of ruining.
 
Needless to say, Mantelli’s lavish, larger-than-life, and often vindictive personality has made him many enemies, and when he is poisoned, the local maresciallo, Perillo, has a headache of a high-profile murder on his hands—and once again turns to Nico for help.


=== August 17 ===


Title: Danger at the Cove
Series: #2in the Island Sisters cozy series set in the Scilly Isles off the coast of Cornwall, England.
304 pages
 
*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.
 
Synopsis: "Renovations on Tregarrick Rock Hotel are coming along, and Evie Mead thinks they just might be done by opening day. Then one of her sister Margot’s old Hollywood friends, Louise, arrives unannounced―and expecting VIP treatment.

Evie has half a mind to tell Louise to find other accommodations, but Margot pleads with Evie, saying that Louise―despite her upbeat and demanding attitude―is grieving her recently deceased husband. Evie pities her, and besides, the sisters need help. A simple rewiring project has resulted in a major overhaul of the hotel, and they’re way over budget. The small life insurance policy left to Evie by her own husband is gone, and they are desperate for funds. Margot believes that Louise, a marketing guru, can put the hotel on the map and give it the boost it needs.

But when a member of the hotel staff is found dead, and then another murder follows, the sisters’ plans crumble before their eyes. Who would do such a thing―and why? In a rollicking adventure involving a shipwreck filled with buried treasure, a dashing and mysterious Australian named Randy, and old rivalries stretching back to far before Evie and Margot ever set foot on the island, it’s all hands on deck to find the killer―and save the hotel.


Title: The Double Mother
Author: Michel Bussi
Standalone thriller set in France
480 pages
 
Synopsis: "Four-year-old Malone Moulin is haunted by nightmares of being handed over to a complete stranger and begins claiming his mother is not his real mother. His teachers at school say that it is all in his imagination as his mother has a birth certificate, photos of him as a child and even the pediatrician confirms Malone is her son. The school psychologist, Vasily, believes otherwise as the child vividly describes an exchange between two women. Vasily begins recording their conversations and reinterprets the creatures Malone uses in the childish tales he recounts to his stuffed toy to piece the story together as much as he can.

Convinced that Malone is telling the truth, Vasile approaches police commander Marianne Augresse with the case, who has been searching for a gang of thieves that robbed a luxury store and left a couple dead in the neighboring town of Deauville to no avail. Not knowing why a child would lie and with perhaps her own own maternal and protective instinct kicking in, Marianne takes Vasile’s plead for help seriously.

Marianne and her team soon discern that Malone’s memory is in the hands of those around him; the cold members of the Moulin family and the people that they associate themselves with. With Malone’s recollection of the past quickly fading to give way to pirates, animals and other more innocent thoughts children have at his age, Marianne is desperate to find a through line.

Well-crafted and showcasing the fragility of a child’s cognition, The Double Mother is a riveting investigation to follow."
 
 
Title: Bloodless
Series: #19 in the FBI special agent Pendergast series set in Georgia.
400 pages
 
Synopsis: "A fabulous heist:

On the evening of November 24, 1971, D. B. Cooper hijacked Flight 305—Portland to Seattle—with a fake bomb, collected a ransom of $200,000, and then parachuted from the rear of the plane, disappearing into the night…and into history.

A brutal crime steeped in legend and malevolence:

Fifty years later, Agent Pendergast takes on a bizarre and gruesome case: in the ghost-haunted city of Savannah, Georgia, bodies are found with no blood left in their veins—sowing panic and reviving whispered tales of the infamous Savannah Vampire.

A case like no other:

As the mystery rises along with the body count, Pendergast and his partner, Agent Coldmoon, race to understand how—or if—these murders are connected to the only unsolved skyjacking in American history. Together, they uncover not just the answer…but an unearthly evil beyond all imagining.
"
 
 
There's definitely a little something for everyone in this list, isn't there? August isn't August without a new Owen McKenna or Bruno Chief of Police mystery, and author Kate Ellis has been a favorite of mine for years, too.

Did I find something you just had to add to your Need-to-Read list? Which one(s)? Inquiring minds would love to know!

Monday, July 26, 2021

I Have Emma Stonex Covered!


 

It's been a while since I've had a cover-off. Experiencing one distraction after another can do that to a person, so when I came across the UK cover of a book I'd recently downloaded to my Kindle, I thought it was time to dust off this poor, neglected series and start it up again.

What book had I downloaded to my Kindle? Emma Stonex's The Lamplighters because of my weakness for lighthouses, the book's synopsis, and the price. Pardon the digression, but don't you just love when a $14.99 eBook you've been keeping your eye on has its price adjusted to $14.95-- like that four cents is going to make you buy the book? Yeah. Me, too. Needless to say, the sale price for this book involved a lot more than four cents!

But, to get back on track, here's the synopsis of the book:
 

It's New Year's Eve, 1972, when a boat pulls up to the Maiden Rock lighthouse with relief for the keepers. But no one greets them. When the entrance door, locked from the inside, is battered down, rescuers find an empty tower. A table is laid for a meal not eaten. The Principal Keeper's weather log describes a storm raging round the tower, but the skies have been clear all week. And the clocks have all stopped at 8:45.

Two decades later, the wives who were left behind are visited by a writer who is determined to find the truth about the men's disappearance. Moving between the women's stories and the men's last weeks together in the lighthouse, long-held secrets surface and truths twist into lies as we piece together what happened, why, and who to believe.

In her riveting and suspenseful novel, Emma Stonex writes a story of isolation and obsession, of reality and illusion, and of what it takes to keep the light burning when all else is swallowed by dark.

 

Sounds like the type of story that will make me jump if, while I'm reading it, Denis sneaks up behind me and startles me. Plus, there's the added bonus of the lighthouse being off the coast of Cornwall, England-- one of my favorite spots.

Okay now. Time to take a look at those covers!


 

To me, both covers are striking and give me the feeling that something is wrong. The abstract graphics and bright colors of the UK cover make me feel as though that lighthouse is in an alternate universe, and that if I go there, strange things are definitely going to happen. Yes indeed, the colors and the graphics used on the UK cover are eye-catching.

However...

(You knew that was coming, didn't you?)

It's the US cover that works for me. It's the US cover that, if I bought books because of their covers alone, would make me buy The Lamplighters. Why? Blue is my favorite color. I love lighthouses, and the one depicted on the US cover makes me feel as though I've climbed all those steps until I'm just below the lantern, and I'm looking out into the darkness and the weather, and I'm looking for... help.

The US cover of The Lamplighters has drawn me right into the story and I haven't even opened the book to read one single word. I have a feeling that that's what the marketing teams for publishing houses want: covers that draw readers right into their books without even opening them. 

What's your opinion? Which cover do you prefer-- UK? US? Neither one? Too close to call? Inquiring minds would love to know!

Sunday, July 25, 2021

The Bookshop Murder by Merryn Allingham

 
First Lines: Abbeymead, Sussex, 1955. Locking the shop door carefully behind her, Flora heaved the last parcel of books into the basket.
 
Expecting the day to be like any other in quiet little Abbeymead, bookshop owner Flora Steele gets the shock of her life when she opens All's Well to find the dead body of a young man on the floor amongst the shelves.
 
The discovery turns her life upside down, and the reputation of her business takes a nosedive amid all the virulent village gossip. Who was the young man? Why did he break into her bookshop? There's nothing else Flora can do but solve the mystery herself-- with the aid of reluctant reclusive mystery writer Jack Carrington. 

~

What's not to like about an English village mystery that takes place ten years after World War II and concerns a bookshop? That's what I thought, too, when I picked up Merryn Allingham's very first Flora Steele mystery, The Bookshop Murder. As I began to read and the pages turned, it got even better. Buried treasure? A priest hole? Secret passages? Definitely my cup of tea.

Allingham puts us right in the era with little details like Flora delivering books by bicycle and the fact that meat had come off rationing only the year before and people still felt eating it was a wicked indulgence. Flora's Aunt Violet, who left her the bookshop, lost her fiancé in World War I and raised Flora after a car accident killed her parents. (How many parents have lost their lives due to car accidents in crime fiction I wonder?) The village also plays its part in the story by spreading all sorts of scandalous gossip and whispers of gruesome doings and haunted bookshops. The coup de grâce involves a bus driver in a neighboring village, but I'll let you find out for yourselves what he did.

The mystery is a good one, and so is the setting, so... what about the characters? Any traditional or cozy mystery worth its salt has to have characters that readers can care about. The Bookshop Murder rises to the occasion in this, too. Flora is intelligent, hard-working, and even though she seems to know how to get her own way, her life so far has been one of doing for others and putting her own dreams aside. Once she decides to enlist the help of mystery writer Jack Carrington, the story shifts gears and becomes even more enjoyable to read.

Jack has his own past that readers have to learn about. He's decided to shut himself away in a house outside the village, and he's hired a young boy to deliver food and books so he doesn't have to deal with anyone else. That is until the boy becomes ill and Flora decides a mystery writer is the perfect person to help her solve a crime. Watching the two work together and become used to each other bodes well for future books in the series.

If mysteries reminiscent of Miss Marple and Miss Seeton are your favorites, then by all means get your hands on a copy of Merryn Allingham's The Bookshop Murder. It has all the hallmarks of being the start of a beautiful reading relationship.

The Bookshop Murder by Merryn Allingham
eISBN: 9781800196810
Bookouture © 2021
eBook, 256 pages

Historical Mystery, #1 Flora Steele mystery
Rating: B
Source: Net Galley

Thursday, July 22, 2021

A Moving Right Along Weekly Link Round-Up

When about the only things a person has to report for the week are that the big senita cactus right outside the living room window is growing new little arms and that the verdin are replacing their nest that was blown out of the cactus by a haboob (dust storm), you know it's been a quiet week. Knitting. Reading. Watching critters. Blogging. Going to get the bandages changed on my leg. Yawn.

So I'll leave you with a funny...
 


Enjoy the links!

 ►Books & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
 
►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
 
►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
 
►Fascinating Folk◄
  • Former shipbuilder Nathie Katzoff creates spectacular wooden bathtubs that resemble small vessels.
  • Shavarsh Karapetyan, the champion swimmer who saved more than twenty lives.
  • Princess Ka'iulani, the tragic life and global legacy of the last Hawaiian princess.
  • Peter Abrahams (AKA Spencer Quinn) on writing a dog mystery and finding the secret to happiness.
  • Donna Leon: a crime reader's guide to the classics.
 
►The Happy Wanderer◄
 
►I ♥ Lists◄

That's all for this week! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll be sharing a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.

Don't forget to take the time to curl up with a good book!

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Down a Dark Road by Linda Castillo

 
First Lines: Two years earlier. He waited until the children slept.
 
Two years ago, Joseph King was sent to prison for the brutal murder of his wife. A known drug user, King's violent temper was no secret, and the entire Amish community around Painters Mill, Ohio, breathed a sigh of relief when this "fallen" Amish man was imprisoned.

But Joseph King escaped, got a gun, and kidnapped his five children. Painters Mill Chief of Police Kate Burkholder knew Joseph King when they were children, and when the alert goes out about the hostage situation, Kate springs to action. In that house with five small children, Joseph demands that Kate look into his case. He insists that he's innocent; that he did not kill his wife. All the evidence points to his guilt, but Kate leaves the house feeling that something is not right. 

Is she really looking for a killer, or merely feeling sorry for someone she had a school girl crush on so long ago?

~

This third audiobook that I've listened to was another good experience. I've long known that Linda Castillo knows how to write a compelling story, and now I know that series narrator Kathleen McInerney is a talented storyteller. Now if only Down a Dark Road hadn't been so predictable!

Castillo does an excellent job of showing readers how precarious the job of a female chief of police can be. One slip-up, one photograph taken out of context, and fellow law enforcement and the town council rush to judgment and start looking for her replacement. It doesn't matter how long she's been doing an excellent job. Yes indeed, reputations are so easily ruined-- and I'm not just talking about Kate's.

There's an ex-cop who shows up in the last quarter of Down a Dark Road that I'd really like to see again, and the relationship Kate had with Joseph King when they were children proves why she's so willing to swim against the current in an attempt to prove that he was innocent. But. I knew Joseph's fate. I knew where Kate should have started looking for the real murderer. And I had an eye-rolling episode when, at the end of the book, Kate gets one of those weird 3 AM calls and doesn't tell anyone where she's going. I am most definitely not a reader who approves of characters who are TSTL (Too Stupid To Live), and Kate stomped right into that mud hole at book's end.

Even though I felt Down a Dark Road was predictable, it was fast-paced, exciting, and still a good listen. If I'd been reading a physical copy of this book, I might not have finished it, but Kathleen McInerney's voice persuaded me to stay with her to the end.

Down a Dark Road by Linda Castillo
Narrated by Kathleen McInerney
ASIN: B071L72QKF
Macmillan Audio © 2017
Audiobook. 9 hours, 58 minutes.
 
Police Procedural, #9 Kate Burkholder mystery
Rating: B
Source: Purchased through Chirp Books. 

The Lock Artist by Steve Hamilton

First Lines: You may remember me. Think back. The summer of 1990. I know that's a while ago, but the wire services picked up the story and I was in every newspaper in the country.
 
Tragedy and trauma have scarred Michael's life since he was eight years old. He hasn't spoken a word for ten years. Not one single word. But he's finally found the one thing he's good at: he's a lock artist. Whether it's a door without a key, a padlock without a combination, or a safe weighing hundreds of pounds, Michael can open them all.
 
It's a talent that makes Michael a hot commodity with the wrong people, and it pushes him-- whether he wants it to or not-- into a life of crime. Then he finally sees his one shot to escape, to go back home to the only person he's ever loved, and it's going to mean unlocking the secret that's kept him silent for so long.
 
~
 
The Lock Artist has been on my radar ever since I heard Steve Hamilton talk about it at a local author event. Now... if only my reaction to the book hadn't been so mixed. 

Michael is a fantastic character, make no bones about it. Showing how those around him deal with someone who doesn't speak illuminates both Michael's character and theirs. Unfortunately, most of them seem to think he's some sort of freak, and once they learn what his talent is, all they can think of is how to exploit his skill at opening any sort of lock he's faced with. Michael is the sort of young man you root for. You want him to get away from the bad guys. You want him to find the peace and happiness he deserves. Because he is a good person trapped in the aftermath of the horrendous things that happened when he was eight years old. Michael behaves as though he has some sort of survivor's guilt, that he deserves whatever happens to him. That trauma seems to have stolen his will, and that's one thing that drove me nuts about The Lock Artist.

The other thing is the glacial unfolding of the story. It seemed to take forever for the story to finally arrive at the point where we learn what happened to Michael all those years ago, and once we find out what happened, a lot of Michael's behavior makes sense. Unfortunately, I'd begun to lose patience with the young man long before the reveal, which undoubtedly says more about me than it does the book. How many times does it take for a person to grow a spine and learn how to refuse to do something he knows is wrong? I know teenagers yearn for acceptance from their peers, but when those peers are repeatedly shown to be entitled jerks who don't care about anyone but themselves, how long does it take for the light bulb to go off over a person's head? In Michael's case, a long, long time.

Between the extremely slow pace and my exasperation with Michael, my enjoyment of The Lock Artist was blunted. However, your mileage may definitely vary-- especially if you have more patience than I do. Steve Hamilton has created a fantastic main character whom I shall remember for a long time, no matter how much he exasperated me.

The Lock Artist by Steve Hamilton
eISBN: 9781429983440
Thomas Dunne Books © 2021
eBook, 304 pages
 
Thriller, Standalone
Rating: B
Source: Purchased from Amazon.