Thursday, 17 September 2009


I love the Mary Russell books and the Martinelli series is my favourite police procedural. I also thoroughly enjoyed Folly which I encouraged my Mum to read recently. So it was with some surprise that I discovered I wasn't really enjoying Touchstone. The problem with this book is the plot is too slight to carry through 500 pages. American Bureau Agent Harris Stuyvesant is tracking a bomber in England amidst the turmoil of social unrest preceding the general strike of 1926. He has a suspect but no direct proof. This would have been fine if the story had just been from Stuyvesant's point of view but unfortunately all six major characters get their turn at the helm. Sure it adds depth and layers to the characters but wreaks havoc with the pacing. There's one section where all six characters get a quiet introspective chapter to themselves and the plot moves nowhere. Laurie R. King's writing is fine. Her knowledge of the political landscape of the time is impressive. But the only real suspense is wondering when the plot is going to start moving.

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