Title: The Reluctant Detective
Author: Finley Martin
Date/Place of Publication: 2012: Acornpress, PEI, Canada
# Pages: 241
Discovered at www.crimewriterscanada.com
Read in paper format.
Also available as an ebook.
Author's website: www.finleymartin.ca
A new Anne for Prince Edward Island but this one, (Wilhelmina) Anne Brown, is a detective. Over the last few years, she has experienced a number of tragedies: the death of her foreign correspondent husband before their daughter Jacqui was born, the deaths of both parents in a car accident and now the death of Bill Darby, her uncle and employer. And as the book opens, it appears that Anne herself is about to find out what dying feels like. We soon learn she has inherited her uncle's detective agency and quickly garnered two customers, a mysterious package and a motorcycle gang bent on revenge.
The reader gets a good feel of what Charlottetown and Summerside are like. In particular, the drive through Summerside brought back memories of the area. Details about the main characters are revealed over time, a more enjoyable process than having everyone described fully when first introduced.
However, the setup for a key part of the story doesn't ring true. Anne is remarkably calm about a major loss. Her casual approach leading up to the event seems unrealistic. Initially, this may throw the reader off but the author successfully draws the reader back into the story, with some cliff hanging chapter endings that are not immediately resolved. The last third of the book picks up, with a good series of twists and turns. An enjoyable book.