16 of 23 people found the following review helpful
A Great Disappointment,
This review is from: The Lighthouse, No. 13 (Adam Dalgliesh mysteries) (Hardcover)
After the brilliance of Death In Holy Orders (to my mind Baroness James' finest book) there have been a pair of disappointments: The Murder Room and now The Lighthouse. Both novels suffer from lackluster plotting and an absolute absence of anything even remotely resembling humor.
I wrote elsewhere that Baroness James is so busy elevating the murder mystery into literature with a capital L that she can often over-reach: the occasional literary allusion to Anthony Trollope can be fun, but eventually the poetic allusions start to feel shoe-horned in to the dialogue.
To be fair, the book begins well. Baroness James is very skilled at creating closed environments and establishing relationships among a diverse set of characters. But before too long I detected the beginnings of a Big Finish, the kind of thing that Baroness James tries for on occasion, and the book just turned very tired and mechanical as the plot ground to a close.