Judith McMonigle Flynn is happily packing her bags. Her husband Joe, and Bill her cousin Renie's husband have planned a vacation trip for the four of them. It's a surprise, so they aren't telling the cousin's where they're going until they're on the planes.
Visions of Hawaii, or The Bahama's float through her head as she tosses in bathing suits and suntan oil.
Imagine her surprise when on the plane she finds that they're on their way to Scotland. Living in the Northwest, cold and wet are normal for the winter, and although there were probably colder and wetter places than Scotland, she couldn't think of any.
Things are even worse as the cousins realize that Joe & Bill picked the spot, because they had made friends with a local Scottish police inspector and he was going to take them on fishing trip, meanwhile Judith & Renie got to stay at an ancient castle high above the North Sea.
Things get off to a rocky start when there's an explosion at Grimloch Castle and a young man is killed. He's married to the local heiress, lives in a stately mansion and father of a new son. Who would want him dead? Or is the curse some say is on his bride? He was her second husband, her first dying tragically and her male friends who have also died unexpectedly.
Judith and Renie decide to investigate, as there is nothing else to do, Joe and Bill are out of touch on their fishing trip.
There are a lot of suspects and this time the local police are actually asking them for their help. More deaths occur and supernatural things start to happen and then Joe & Bill seem to have disappeared.
The cousins have to solve this crime before they and their loved ones end up having the worst vacation they have ever had.
The last few books in this series have been less than stellar. This one, however, has picked up the series a little.
The mystery, as usual was very interesting, complicated and hard to figure out. I actually thought through most of the book that Joe & Bill may have set them up on some type of mystery weekend type of vacation.
Judith is always a great character. Very smart and does real investigations. You don't get the killer suddenly announcing they're the murderer out of the blue as you do in some series, although she will put herself in danger sometimes because she doesn't always think things out.
Cousin Renie is almost back to her likeable self. Renie has always been overly aggressive and willing to fight physically. But in recent books she has almost crossed the line into insanity, with her constant embarrassing remarks to people and the fact that she will start hitting people without provocation. In this book, she has pulled back a little in her embarrassing actions and although she does get physical with a particular character, it seemed more humorous than the insane way she had done in the past few books.
Joe and Bill disappear from the book. I love Joe, he and Judith have the most romantic storyline and I love the interplay between them. But for several books, Joe has disappeared instead of being the supportive, helpful character that he started out as. The series has become an almost exclusive Judith & Renie show. I can't remember the last book where her son and grandchildren actually appeared in the story, and weren't just mentioned in passing.
No returning characters. In earlier books you would see a lot more of Judith & Renie's extensive family. Now they almost seem adrift with only themselves and occasionally their husbands to hang on to.
I love this series and although this book isn't in league with the earlier ones in the series, it's an improvement over the last several books. Get the cousins back home, with their extended families and put Renie and Gertrude on some meds.
This series can be saved.