Welcome to another Mystery Mondays post! My apologies for the lack of one last week, but it was for a good cause, if I do say so myself. But I'm back this week with another review... Elisabeth Lee, author of For Glory and the recently released Flashes of Glory, contacted me recently about reviewing her first book, For Glory. Focusing more on an audience of women in their 40's and 50's, Ms. Lee has written a book with a 50-something female protagonist, Carlyle Hudson, whom you can't help but like. And if you can't tell from the cover, the story involves a dog, the title namesake, Glory. So let's get to it, shall we?
Title: For Glory
Author: Elisabeth Lee
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
Pub Date: October 2006, BookSurge Publishing
Trade paperback, 333 pages
"I deal with other people by keeping secrets. Bottom line: I do not like people knowing what I do for a living, how much money I make, my age, or marital status. So I lie, I think of it as acting. All good poker players act. I'm a very good poker player."
Returning to Kansas from San Francisco after the death of her mother Carlyle Hudson encounters two mysteries: one from her mother's past, and one right in front of her. Who is the source of the ominous demands that she Pay Up?
While I may not be a member of Lee's true target audience with this book, I really enjoyed the story. For Glory is more than a mystery, it's a story of what happens to Carlyle Hudson when she goes home to Kansas after her mother's death to pick up the pieces. Lyle has a newly acquired house and bridal shop that she's not quite sure what to do with, not to mention a little Smooth-haired Fox Terrier named Glory that she seemingly has no desire to put up with. And naturally, you know a man will come into the picture sooner or later, too.
Lee's gift is writing strong characters, and that includes the little dog, Glory! Lyle is full of spunk with a lot of attitude, and you soon see that all of the Hudson women (Lyle and her three aunts, Luce, Loretta and Lenore) are quite a hilarious bunch. While I enjoyed getting to know them, and the story in general, I felt like the two mysteries in the story were a little lacking. Not in actual excitement, of course, but in terms of how they were all figured out. To me, this wasn't your typical "whodunnit" story where the reader is right there trying to figure out who the culprit is. The evidence really wasn't presented in a way that the reader could pick up on all the clues, in my opinion. I noticed some suspicious actions by characters at times, but couldn't figure out what any motives would be. And why random acts of burglary by young thugs seemed to happen with great frequency to Lyle I'll never understand.
Overall, though, it was a light, entertaining read that will certainly get you laughing. And everything is resolved quite nicely at the end, and for me that's when the pieces really started falling together and everything made sense. I guess the sleuth in me just likes to be able to figure it all out as I go.
If you have reviewed this book and would like me to add a link to your review, please leave a comment and let me know!