Book Review: The Book of James by Ellen Green

The Book of James is like ordering a salad at a restaurant and getting a bowl full of lettuce. You can’t complain, because you got what you ordered, but there are no trimmings or any of the small details that go into making a salad extraordinary. This just is what it is.

book of james.jpgYou’ve got the beginnings of a great mystery, with a dying husband telling his wife that, “As soon as they know I’m dead, they’ll come after you.” The mystery continues to unfold as Mackenzie learns that almost everything she knows about her husband was a lie.

The first quarter of this book had me intrigued. The writing’s crisp, you’ve got some interesting characters with a lot of dynamics and a ton of potential. Unfortunately, at least for me, it started tail-spinning from there.

Soon Mackenzie is making idiotic decisions that put herself in danger time and time again, for no other reason than that she has to get to the bottom of this “mystery” of “Who is James,” part of her husband’s last dying words. There’s no urgency, characters and events start getting thrown in just because the plotline is stalling, and it never really recovers. The final reveal was so anticlimactic, again with Mackenzie acting in a way that honestly made no sense at that point, that I was just glad to put this one to bed.

A miss in my book, but something fans of cozy mysteries might enjoy more. 2.5 gracious stars.

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