Saturday, February 14, 2009
On My Shelf
I'll admit, I "borrowed" a book from my sister's shelf. P.I. on a Hot Tin Roof, by Julie Smith. Lately, I've been watching a lot of thriller/mystery TV shows, specifically Bones, as well as Monk, Psych, and Burn Notice, and all of those combined have put me in the mood for some great mystery novels. When I saw this particular book had been left on my sister's shelf at home, I picked it up and started reading.
The P.I. mentioned in the title is Talba Wallis, a whip-smart private investigator by day and New Orleans-famous poet by night, who goes undercover in order to get her friend, Angie, off the hook for something she had been framed for. But things get complicated when the man she is investigating turns up dead, and his fiance hires her to find the killer. The case has many twists and turns, which I really enjoyed, because sometimes I know "who-dun-it" before the book really gets to that point, so finding one that kept me guessing until the very end was a real treasure.
Things I didn't like about the novel, however:
1. Talba is kind of weird. Especially her alter-ego, Baroness de Pontalba.
2. The author, who is white, is writing about the life of a black woman. I felt often that she was over-compensating for the lack of experience she had in that field, and I was a little annoyed that anytime someone of a Caucasian descent was introduced, they were automatically labeled as racist, especially if they were middle-to-upper-class.
3. I KNOW it was a New Orleans based book, but the accents and bad grammar were KILLING me.
All in all, I'd recommend this book, if only for the good mystery it provides.