Sunday, January 26, 2014

Scraps of Evidence by Barbara Cameron

This quick read contains a simple mystery and a fast moving romance.

Logan is new to the St. Augustine (Florida) police department, having been recently recruited from Chicago. Tess is a native, having worked her way up to detective. The two are a team assigned to solve a murder in the city – the latest from a serial killer.

I learned a little about St. Augustine, the oldest city in the country. I did feel that the mystery was a bit simple. The emphasis of the book was the romance, by far. Logan and Tess were so focused on their relationship it seems they missed clues staring them in the face. It took a civilian to give them the final obvious clue and even then they did not prepare properly to arrest the murderer and Tess is kidnapped (sort of). And at the end the motive for the serial killing is never fully revealed.

The romance between Logan and Tess really goes quickly. A romance usually contains some seemingly insurmountable obstacles to the relationship that the couple has to work through. This romance just breezed along. In other police mysteries I've read, romance between fellow workers is frowned upon but in this novel it was encouraged. I found that a bit unrealistic.

Cameron usually writes Amish novels. This is a different genre for her. This novel has more the flavor of an Amish work than it does a mystery, even a cozy mystery. The story is short. The novel itself is just 213 pages. The rest of the book contains discussion questions and previews of Cameron's upcoming books. It could have certainly benefited from an epilogue. We could have had further information about the serial killer and his motive and a sense of the future for Logan and Tess. Granted, I read an uncorrected proof. This is one novel I would have liked stretched out a bit, to the more common length of around 300 pages.

Barbara Cameron is the author of more than 35 fiction and nonfiction books and three nationally televised movies. She is the winner of the first Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award. She lives in Edgewater, Florida. Find out more at http://BarbaraCameron.com and www.Amishliving.com.

Abingdon Press, 240 pages.

I received a complimentary and uncorrected egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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