Sunday, April 14, 2013

Review: Sketch Me If You Can by Sharon Pape

Description (from cover):

'Police sketch artist Rory McCain never needed a partner to create a likeness of a suspect. But now, working as a sleuth on the side, she's got a partner who's been dead for over a century...

When Rory's favorite uncle dies suddenly, he bequeaths to his niece a beautiful Victorian home and a list of clients from his private detective business. As Rory tries to get settled in the house, she is startled by a ghost from the 1870's--federal marshal Ezekiel Drummond, aka Zeke--who was helping Uncle Mac with his cases. In exchange, Mac had agreed to help Zeke find the killer who had shot the lawman in the back.

When Zeke proposes a similar partnership with Rory, she balks. Having a ghost as a housemate is bad enough. But as she's drawn into one of her uncle's unsolved cases, Rory finds she needs the help of an experienced investigator--even one who is stubborn and old-fashioned, cantankerous and sexist--not to mention long dead. Faced with a cold-blooded killer, Rory may even need the marshal's ghostly help in staying alive herself...'

My thoughts:

I had high hopes for this one. It has a ghost as main character, a independent female protagonist and it's a cozy mystery. However, for some reason, this one just fell flat. It's another book to add to the 'disappointing debut' category. Maybe it's because I read a lot of cozy mysteries, that I have abnormally high standards for my reads. But one thing I cannot stand, across the board, is figuring out the murderer fairly quickly and that is most definitely what happened with this one. I think with mystery books, this is the most irritating thing for me. I do not enjoy books that are easily figured out. I cannot tell you how much this makes a book less interesting for me. I want to be in suspense until the last page and have to use my brain to figure out a mystery, not have it given to me on a platter.

Sometimes I feel like I am preaching to the choir with this issue. It seems like this has been a reoccurring problem with the books I have read this year. If this is the way that cozy mysteries are going, then I might just have to find some other genre to read. The plot and the characters weren't all that bad and of course I love the paranormal element with the added ghost. The writing wasn't appalling and was easy to understand and comprehend. There were some times where things happened a little fast and some details were left out and then talked about later that I found a little confusing.

Overall, not the worst cozy mystery debut, but most definitely on my list of the top ten least liked debuts. Of course, I will give the series another shot by reading the next installment in the series, but if that one is anything like this one, I will call it quits on the series. I know some people really like this series, but I'm thinking perhaps this isn't the one for me. I am reading the second one in the series now, so make sure you come back to see if the author redeems herself and the series or if it becomes a series I abandoned.

Overall Rating: 1.5

Title:  Sketch Me If You Can
Author:  Susan Pape
Series:  Portrait of Crime Mystery #1
Publisher:  Berkley
Publication Date:  August 3, 2010
Pages:  304
Genre:  Cozy Mystery
Get It:  Amazon; Barnes & Noble

Disclaimer: This book was given to me by the author in exchange for my honest review. I reviewed this book without compensation of any kind. All thoughts and opinions are solely mine.

1 comment:

  1. Isn't it something how be can have such different reactions to books? I didn't LOVE this book, but I did enjoy it. But then, figuring out who the murderer is early doesn't bother me so much.

    Anyway, you sound how I feel about Rebecca Hale's Cats and Curios Mystery series. So many other's loved it, and it just bugged me. I gave up after book 3.


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