Close to the Heel is done. I was impressed, especially since it wasn’t really what I was expecting. Crime novels are a bit out of my wheelhouse, but I liked this quite a bit. McClintock developed a nice narrative voice for her young protagonist, and it moved along at a steady yet quickening pace. I saw a few of the plot turns coming, but I get the feeling that it was intentional.
I think the only thing that bugs me is something familiar with quite a few stories told in first person, especially who-done-it type stories. If I am allowed inside the head of a first person narrator, then knowledge that narrator has should not be hidden from me. If he reads a note and stuffs it in his pocket, then I should know what the note says. There are critical points where that type of information is hidden from the reader, and they are jarring. “It’s the hand of the author showing between the lines” as an old grad school professor used to tell us in class. It is, I think, a somewhat necessary technique in first person mysteries, but to me it seems like a trick to cover up a problem with either plot or pacing.
That said, Close to the Heel is still an enjoyable read. It’s part of a series that released on 10 October called “Seven the Series: 7 Grandsons, 7 Journeys, 7 Authors.” I’m intrigued enough by reading this one to pick up one or more of the others.
Next up is The Dragon Reborn. I’ll stick with it until it gets dark out, but then I’m turning to Poe.
Total pages read so far today: 503