Happy Reading

Toni's bookshelf: read

The Godfather of Kathmandu (Sonchai Jitpleecheep, #4)
Ape House
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest
Operation Napoleon
Walking Dead
The Sentimentalists
The Heretic Queen
The Midnight House
Cross Fire
Peony in Love
Finding Nouf: A Novel
City of Veils: A Novel
First Daughter
A Place of Hiding
Peter Pan

Toni Osborne's favorite books »

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

"What Came Before He Shot Her", by Elizabeth George

Book 14, in the Inspector Lynley series

Ms. George has given her beloved protagonists a long and deserved rest and moved forward to explore in depth and meticulous detail the darkness of violence, the unfortunate choice of very troubled individuals. This novel delves into events leading to the brutal death of Helen Lynley who met a tragic end in the last pages of “With No one as Witness “. The method used is different from her other novels, this one ties up loose ends, a story stemming from another story.

I must admit I had a hard time getting into this mystery, it never gelled from the get-go however it may have been an off day for me. The story follows the path of three mixed-raced children from the Campbell family and how each one of them deals with the feeling of rejection after learning their grandmother abandoned them on their aunt’s doorstep and left for Jamaica. As a reader we see how each character addresses the constant struggle to survive and the individual choices they made as they spiral down the road of no return.

This is a drawn out story with page after page of uneventful details, it reminded me of a 900 page essay I had for a school project. The black argot of London dialogue was hard to follow and required more concentration than I was willing to give, I found myself skipping paragraphs and feeling I had not missed a thing. I enjoy Ms. George’s insight and her ability to draw verbal pictures of people caught on the edge creating an entertaining psychological drama but this time I was rather disappointed and I also miss the atmosphere the characters Lynley and Havers normally bring to the table. I like this series but from time to time it seems the ball is dropped and I am left with an OK… what is next feeling.

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