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Book Review: Aground On St. Thomas by Rebecca M. Hale

Updated on December 29, 2014
St. Thomas is shut down in the third installment of the Island Mysteries
St. Thomas is shut down in the third installment of the Island Mysteries

You know how you have something to do and the more you put it off you get that queasy feeling in the pit of your stomach? That's how I felt when I had gotten my copy of Aground on St. Thomas.

I put it off for as long as I could and I thought this would be the book which I would end the year on. Surprisingly, I was able to read all 390 pages in a single sitting (and now that queasy feeling is gone!).

As a somewhat stand alone installment to the Mystery in the Islands series, this installment isn't good and it isn't bad. It's somewhere in the middle. For the last two reviews of the series, I've said author Rebecca M. Hale does a good job telling the story, but again, its told in narrative. A style I've never been fond of.

With an "ensemble" cast, the story has the FBI taking control of St. Thomas virtually shutting down the island paradise. No one in and no one off of the island. They've detained senators and two senators are unaccounted for. Those senators, Sanchez and Bobo have managed to escape the Legislature Building and are hiding out amongst the citizens of the island as well as at a church.

Besides this storyline, there are a few more with everyone escaping something. This installment also brings back a few characters from the second installment (which their storyline would have been much better) and is probably the easiest to follow.

Hale manages to create a dark tone throughout the book. Another problem I've had with this and the past installments is the lack of character names and dialogue. I think it would have been a lot easier following the actions had there been more dialogue. More than half of the time I was left scratching my head when it came to what was going on.

With too much emphasis on the narrative there are times when it felt like I was reading some type of college paper. During the more "action" related scenes, everything seemed to shift to what appeared to be a history lesson.

Taking a trip down to the islands for these mysteries is a gamble but if you're a fan of narrative writing then this is for you. Surprisingly, it was quite a fast read.


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