Book Review for A PLACE TO DIE by Dorothy James
I "met" Dorothy James not long ago through Kindle. This was a random, yet fortunate encounter. Because I adore Vienna, I couldn't help buying her book set in that gorgeous locale. Here's a review for her literary mystery, A PLACE TO DIE: an Inspector Georg Buechner Mystery.
Warmest regards and remember to write like the wind!
Aaron Paul Lazar
Title: A Place to Die
Author: Dorothy James
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation (April 21, 2010)
Genre: Mystery, 436 pages
Price: Kindle eBook: $7.69; Paperback: $18.71; Hardcover: $34.95
Publisher website address: http://www.viennamysteries.com/
Author’s personal website: http://myplaceformystery.com
A PLACE TO DIE is an intriguing story set in Austria, reminiscent of a good English mystery. I just finished reading it last night, and am already missing the characters. At first I was attracted to the book because it was set in Wien (Vienna) - I adore Wien. But then as I "visited" with these folks night after night (reading a little in bed each night), I grew terribly fond of them.
I was particularly rooting for American Eleanor Fabian, a woman of great depth who deserved much more in life than her annoying husband provided. I'm passionate about marriage and devotion in real life, I believe that once married one is duty-bound to stay married and devoted to each other, unless there's something truly awful going on. But Dorothy James convinced me otherwise with Eleanor.
I enjoyed getting to know the other characters in the Haus Im Wald, too. Each was colorful, deliciously unique, and memorable. Inspector Georg Buchner is a fun lead, likeable as well as clever.
Ms. James' vivid scene painting placed me smack dab in the middle of winter in Austria, and I felt as if I knew the Haus intimately by the end of the book. (I also craved Kaffee und Kuchen many times during the characters' dining events!)
As people start dropping dead in the Haus im Wald, the tension builds. But never did Ms. James relinquish her literary approach to the situation, providing a steady source of introspection balanced with action and character development.
The ending is most satisfying - a delightful and unexpected villain is revealed - and some of the sexual twists and innuendos were most surprising and added a bit of spice to the story as well.
Ms. James writes smoothly, with no annoying typos or needs for extra editing which seems to be more and more prevalent these days when books are converted to Kindle format. This book was beautifully formatted and of very high caliber.
I recommend this complex, highbrow-yet-addicting story, and look forward to future works by Dorothy James.
Aaron Paul Lazar writes to soothe his soul. The author of LeGarde Mysteries, Moore Mysteries, and Tall Pines Mysteries enjoys the Genesee Valley countryside in upstate New York, where his characters embrace life, play with their dogs and grandkids, grow sumptuous gardens, and chase bad guys. Visit his website at www.legardemysteries.com and watch for his upcoming Twilight Times Books releases, TERROR COMES KNOCKING (2011), FOR KEEPS (2012), FOR THE BIRDS(2011), ESSENTIALLY YOURS (2012), DON’T LET THE WIND CATCH YOU (2012), and the author’s preferred edition of DOUBLE FORTÉ (2012).