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on July 15, 2015
Some nice twists bit mostly boring.
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on April 19, 2015
Poor development of characters. Hard to follow story. Not sure what happened at the end.
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on December 21, 2014
Having visited all the Virgin Islands, both American and British, I was intrigued by the plot of this book. As I plunged into the book, I quickly became confused. The story line jumped around a lot. Pen, the main character, was an unlikeable, lazy, boozer. I found all the characters unlikeable. The silly patois was annoying. Many parts dragged and/or were repetitive. References to places I visited made it somewhat interesting. I am not sure if I will read any more of this series.
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on August 31, 2014
A fun book that mixes island history and lore into a fantastic Caribbean mystery. Great characters and an easy to read story line make for a great book.
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on April 14, 2014
Lots of island history and myth in this novel, but the continuity is quite odd. I had to keep reminding myself that the main portion of the book occurs prior to what was in the beginning. Character development lacks fullness - sort of like watching a movie that's been edited too much. The backdrop of island scenery is fabulous and visions of the locals' table next to the restaurant dumpster describe the sights and stench with unique detail.
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on November 9, 2013
The first in A Mystery in the Islands series, Afoot on St. Croix combines a heavy-drinking resort manager seeking refuge from her past, a sinking ferry with a missing woman, and a peculiar environmentalist who come together with other quirky characters in an idyllic setting in the Virgin Islands. Well researched both historically and personally, Hale takes the history of the island, especially the Slave Revolt and the legend of the Amina Slave Princess and tells a convincing story. Her characters and settings come alive. The eco-campground, the Islanders, the swimming iguana prompted me to look for pictures on Google where I found my mental images accurately depicted. The attention to detail ties all elements of the story into a compelling read. I highly recommend this book.
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on November 4, 2013
I really did not enjoy this book. I had little to no sympathy for the main character, and I found the chapters that changed the narrative point of view to be jarring. The plot didn't do much for me either. I won't be reading more in this series.
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on February 25, 2013
As a 36 year resident of St. Thomas, now living in Virginia, I looked forward to some familiar memories being stirred by this mystery. Unfortunately, there were certain anomilies that made it hard to accept.
Ms. Hale's attempts to phonetically represent the West Indian dialect (Creole) were woefully wrong and bad. I never knew anyone who spoke like that. Also, no one ever called Taxi-Vans "Truck-Taxis". As in other previous reviews, I had a difficult time keeping up with who was talking, when and why. I prefer a story where you can identify with (and like) at least one character...I didn't! Upon finishing, I still wasn't sure who had done what to whom...and, again, why. Don't know if I'll bother with her next outing.
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on February 13, 2013
This is the first in a new series by this author set in the Virgin Islands. This looked to be an excellent setting for a mystery with the local colour, people, beautiful scenery and island life all able to add to the story.

Unfortunately I found the story never got going for me. The "Adrift" in the title was rather apt - the whole story felt like this.

The author's style is one that doesn't suit me, unfortunately, and this coloured my enjoyment of the story. She jumps around different time periods and characters without any real warning so I was sometimes confused as to what was going on. I also felt absolutely no liking for any of the characters, including the main `heroine' Pen Hoffstra, which meant I wasn't really engaged in their lives.

Some of the descriptions of the Virgin Islands were good and there was some interesting history but overall I felt this wasn't the sort of book that I enjoy reading and I found it frustrating.

Originally published for Curled Up With A Good Book © Helen Hancox 2013
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on January 14, 2013
This was my first experience with the author, Rebecca Hale. As I began reading the book, I became confused as to whether I was reading a story or a history book. I was never able to connect with the main character- as the story bounced between the history of the island, the main character and the secondary characters. The main character is a lazy alcoholic who would rather turn to a bottle than anything else. I normally will finish a book in one sitting once it "grabs" me, however as I attempted to get "lost" in the story it was no use. After 10 or 11 chapters, I had to put it down for the night- I just could not connect at all. The history is well researched however the characters are weak. I wouldn't necessarily classify the story as a mystery at all (not in any sense that I have read). I believe I want to read the "cat" mysteries, however if the characters and plot are along the same line as this, I will be disappointed.
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