Monday, August 11, 2008

More mysteries

Lee Child's are not the only mysteries I've read lately. I've also worked my way through Stephen Booth's The Dead Place, Quintin Jardine's Autographs in the Rain, and Val McDermid's Beneath the Bleeding, all of which are competently written, fairly satisfying exemplars of the genre, but none of which I'd go out of my way to recommend. Too bad, because I had high hopes for the Val McDermid, whose Tony Hill and Carol Jordan have an interesting relationship. Part of the problem with this one, for me at least, seems to stem from the dragging-out that's occurring because McDermid's got to sustain an approach-avoidance chemistry between the two, and it's looking more like stagnation than tension. Plus the whole Muslim-associated-with-terrorism plot seems too obvious and opportunistic, if admittedly timely.

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