RogerBW's Blog

Owls Well That Ends Well, Donna Andrews 10 November 2014

Sixth mystery starring Meg Lanslow, contemporary blacksmith. Meg and her boyfriend have bought a huge old house very cheaply, on condition that they clear out and sell the accumulated junk left by the previous owner. But during the sale, a dubious dealer in antiquities turns up dead…

For me, the Meg Lanslow stories practically define a certain type ofmodern cosy. It's not that Meg enjoys finding bodies; she's no ghoul. But she deals with them calmly, just as she deals with the other problems in her life, which in this book mostly consist of troublesome relatives and yard-sale visitors.

This is lightweight, fluffy stuff, even though it involves murders. Most of the enjoyment is to be derived not from the problem-solving, though Andrews plays fair with the reader, but from the assorted strange people and odd incidents that take place: an invasion by the neighbouring farmer's prize sheep, a yard-sale vendor who's unexpectedly offering racy lingerie, Meg's father's obsession with barn owls, and so on. I don't know what this subgenre should called, but it's the same sort of thing as Brett's Fethering mysteries, though Andrews does a better job with the actual detective story.

It's enjoyable tosh, basically. There's nothing here to offend, but also nothing that will provoke deep thought.

I'm filling in gaps in the series because of past difficulty in finding the books, but it's not at all hard to find one's footing. There are plenty of references to previous incidents in the series, but this is where it starts to settle down a bit rather than bouncing between settings as the first few volumes did.

Followed by No Nest for the Wicket.

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