Gone Before Christmas
by Charles Finch
I'm combining the reviews of The Inheritance and Gone Before Christmas together because I read them back-to-back and the stories follow each other in the timeline of the Charles Lenox series.
The Inheritance is a bit of a disjointed mystery in which the subplots feel like them may come together at the end of the book but never intersect beyond involving the characters in the book. As far as the mysteries go, the main one was interesting and did keep me guessing as a reader, though it was not nearly as interesting as the subplot. The subplot was treated as a secondary or even tertiary storyline, but was the far more interesting plot in the book. I do hope the author comes back to that story to wrap it up a bit better, as we felt there were some loose ends.
I liked learning more about Charles and his early life, and perhaps this book was to set the reader up for the next-in-series which are actually prequels to the current story rather than a continuation of the timeline in this book. I have no objection to the prequels, but I do hope the overarching story is brought back to the current timeline soon, as I said it felt like there were some loose ends, not exactly a cliffhanger ending, but definitely some unfinished threads.
Gone Before Christmas was an easy to read short story following on from The Inheritance. It was a fairly easy to solve mystery, but it was fun to read. I was pleased with the story, though I found faults with it as well. Carrying on from the events in The Inheritance, it seemed the author had completely forgotten a bit of the story in The Inheritance which impacted one character greatly. I was disappointed by that. It was a big point in the subplot of the previous novel, and should not have been either forgotten or easily glossed over without mention.
Overall they were fun books, and quite enjoyable visits with friends, which is what I want in series books. And maybe I am being too picky a reader; maybe I just pick out things others miss. I am looking forward to the next-in-series prequels and learning more about Charles Lenox in his early days as a detective.
One Bear's Opinion: Four Cups of Tea with a plate of Christmas Seed Cakes
Happy Reading Everyone,