MOTIVATION for READING: I have a friend who loves to read. However, we don’t read the same books and of all the book conversations we’ve had, we rarely can find any titles we both can say we’ve read. It’s obvious we have different tastes and perhaps I should have known better when she told me she couldn’t get into The Help and didn’t finish it.
However, after she wrote down a few titles and the author name Colleen Coble on a slip of paper, I decided to try Without a Trace. It was available at the library. I saw the rating of 4+ on goodreads; what could go wrong?
WHAT’s it ABOUT: A search and rescue team, Bree and her pup Samson, start off searching for a few lost kids in the forests of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and we meet a whole slew of people. And, since I didn’t realize but soon discovered why this is in the Christian Mystery genre, we are introduced to how wonderful God’s plan is for us if we only believe, which whatdoyouknow Bree doesn’t and is annoyed by all these loving trusting people who keep telling her to pray and read bible verses. Bree’s husband and 4 year old son crashed their plane a year prior and Bree and Samson continue to look for their remains. Oh yea! those kids lost in the forest at the beginning of the book? They meet a crazy lady living in the forest who has a small boy with her – – Bree, the sheriff, the lost kids’ family dismiss this and think it only wild child imaginations. (sigh)
Well… maybe I’m not a plot-driven mystery reader. This story was very much propelled by what happens and what happens next and clues dropped in dialog here and more background shared in dialog here and then something happens and the character are a bit flat and I, well, I was bored. I skipped 150+ pages to read the last few and it all got summed up very tidy and happily. The Christian philosophy didn’t really bother me but it was all so simple. The mystery, the proselytizing, the clues – all heavy-handed.
I did like the dog, Samson, the mutt search-and-rescue dog. As soon as he failed to warm to one of the characters, (SPOILER! – are you kidding me?!)
RATING: Two slices of pie. Some kind of rhubarb or blueberry or both would be a good – lots of food connections in this book to the Finnish heritage in the region of that part of Michigan.
* Yes, large print! I didn’t even request it but that’s how it came when I picked it up at the library. Which worked out VERY WELL because it is hard to read outside in the sun when you don’t have sunglass-reading glasses. I read this on the boat – a lovely way to spend a beautiful day even if the book wasn’t compelling.