I have to admit, ten pages in and I was wondering if I was going to continue. Good thing I was too lazy to get up to get another book. The good news is, as I moved along, my problems with the first part evaporated, and it turned out to be a very good book indeed. Now I'm ordering a few more of these luscious Canadian treats by Lou Allin.
What was the problem? The writing was too clever by half -- seemed like every sentence was overloaded with metaphors, clever little characterizations, similes and more. I was finding it necessary to read every sentence at least twice, trying to figure out what she was talking about. There's still some problem with that, as the book goes along, but the way-too-clever writing diminishes to the point where it's not a problem. It would still help to have some knowledge of Canadian lore -- all kinds of lore, everything from the names of local beers to flora and fauna. Some sentences I never did figure out -- like one where she was talking about seeing an "asp" under some leaves. Couldn't possibly be a snake, must be a plant of some kind. It didn't seem critical to the story line, so I just moved along.
All in all, a worthy mystery. I liked the characters, the plot and most of all the location and scenery. I've spent a lot of time on lakes in Northern Minnesota, and I tell ya, there were times when Allin was writing about the Canadian lake side I could actually smell it -- wonderful! I'm sure I'm not the only reader to start to reassess the possibility of living on a lake in these cold climes....
Bottom line: Loved the book -- highly recommended for anyone who likes location-rich books with a touch of mystery.