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Murder in Plain Sight: a Summer McCloud paranormal mystery Kindle Edition
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|Length: 289 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Everything happens very fast in this paranormal mystery, and I love the pace, don't misunderstand me, in fact I really enjoyed the first 50 pages. The pace was not my issue with this book.
My main problem with this one was the incoherence of the story, the inconsistencies.
I don't want to spoil nothing so I'm not giving examples but, sadly, this book has a few nonsenses, like incongruous conclusions and really wrong judgements, ironically coming the most from a cop (our heroine's boyfriend is a cop, a terrible one, if you ask me).
Every time I was enjoying the story and wanting to know what was going to happen, someone jumped to a ridiculous conclusion and kicked me off the book completely.
Maybe I didn't enjoy this one because I have read lots of mystery books in my life and I am a very picky with them. I don't know. I just know it wasn't for me.
I love the suspense, the way this kind of novels makes me think and has me constantly guessing and on the edge of my chair (or sofa, or bed).
I want them to be difficult, to make me struggle to know what is happening and who did what.
In my modest opinion, in mystery, is equally important the conclusion and the way you come to this conclusion. I think this is exactly the charm mystery books has, and what "Murder in plain sight" lacks.
I hate to give bad reviews but this book was not for me, and it's really a shame because the premise seemed very attractive, and I usually enjoy paranormal mystery.
If you are not as used as I am to mystery books maybe you could love this story.
My view is that Broadwell would have done better by plotting the book firmly on one side or the other of the murder mystery-paranormal trench. Perhaps my view is fatuous, based too much on taste, so enough of that. As to the quality and the style of the writing, they are both top-drawer, as they always are with Nikki Broadwell's books.
This plot starts with a whimsical backwater charm, in which the 'witchcraft' is really more to do with a world of herbs and spices and mental illusion, centred in the whimsical behaviours of eccentric dreamers, rather than in paranormal genre characters that are conjured out of evil. The ghosts, when we eventually forced into seeing them as such, seem to be more interesting constructions than many of the living.
I enjoyed reading Murder in Plain Sight, even if I really believe that it would have been better plotted as a plain whodunit, with realistic characters that merely play in a world of potions, candles, and woodland exhibitionism. The plots drift into otherworld environs where real paranormal abilities abound is hard to reconcile.
The characters are all well drawn, with the principal ones being painted in sufficient and yet never overworked colour. The settings are made visual and some of the inconsistencies in the plot can be explained away by drawing on the paranormal. That Summer seemed to struggle to remember exactly what her mother looks like, or even to be aware of the existence of others so physically close to her is certainly worrying, unless one mentally rewrites early events in the book. Necessary reappraisal in the light of change is reasonable, especially in murder mystery; however it mustn't jar with previous information. Or one can do as I did and simply believe that Summer suffered a severe case of aphantasia.
To sum up, this is a case of great writing that within the tight confines of each chapter is very entertaining, and yet somehow the end result doesn't quite all fit together. I am really looking forward to reading other reviews as I'm sure that opinion will vary widely. This would be a great book club read as I'm sure it would generate plenty of debate.
Sadly, the bad news is that the story feels like a cartoon filled with two-dimensional characters, who do not says things like their real-life counterparts would and who move through a world similar to yet very different from ours. For example, no law enforcement officer I have ever met would think that just for a bookstore owner to have sold a book to a murder victim would make her the prime suspect and 'almost certain' to be arrested.
I have no idea if the author intended to create this feeling of non-reality or whether Ms Broadwell just does not know how a murder investigation really works. It matters not to me. I gave up after a 100 or so pages of reading about what seemed like a village in a pop-up book.