Thursday, June 15, 2017

Throwback Thursday: Manna from Hades by Carola Dunn

Author: Carola D
First published in 2009 by Minatour Books

Eleanor Trewynn is a widow of some years living in Port Mabyn, a small fishing village in Cornwall, England. In her younger days, she traveled the exotic parts of the world with her husband. These days, she’s retired and founded the local charity shop. Her niece, Megan Pencarrow, transferred nearby, and was recently promoted to the rank of Detective Sargent. Perhaps the only downside is that she is now working for a DI who doesn’t approve of women on the police force and who really doesn’t much approve of Megan’s aunt Eleanor, as she is something of a thorn in his rather substantial side.

All of these factors collide when, the day after collecting donations, Eleanor and the vicar’s wife find the dead body of a longhaired, scruffy-looking youth hidden in the stockroom of the charity shop. Then they discover that some donated jewelry thought to be fake is actually very real, very expensive, and the haul from a violent robbery in London. Making matters more complex, the corpse found in the storeroom is apparently not one of the robbers. Carola Dunn's Manna from Hades is a confounding Cornish case of daring theft, doublecross, and a wily older woman confronted by a case of murder most foul.

Manna from Hades was a random pick from my library.  I have had some good luck with random picks, so I held out hope for this one.  I love watching British shows like this on Netflix, so I was hoping for a good story set in a small English town in the 60s.  Good old fashioned detective work without the technology of today is always fun to read about.  The problem that I ended up having with this book was it was so boring.  There were multiple characters that is was hard to keep thing straight.  Eleanor kept forgetting to tell the detectives things and would feed them information piecemeal as she remembered them.  It got annoying and was clearly a device to push the plot along.  

Another problem may have been that I listened  tot he audio version of the book.  The narrator didn't do a great job of differentiating between characters with different voices.  So it was easy to confuse who was speaking.  At about 70% I fast forwarded to the end to see who did it.  I wasn't impressed.  I doubt I will continue with any more of this this series.

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